On July 1st, 2001, Portugal decriminalized every imaginable drug, from marijuana, to cocaine, to heroin. Some thought Lisbon would become a drug tourist haven, others predicted usage rates among youths to surge.
Eleven years later, it turns out they were both wrong.
Over a decade has passed since Portugal changed its philosophy from
labeling drug users as criminals to labeling them as people affected by a
disease. This time lapse has allowed statistics to develop and in time,
has made Portugal an example to follow.