Chief Constable Bliss said:
Recent evidence suggests that, overall, drug misuse in the UK is falling.
However, government policy on drugs enforcement is very clear and unambiguous and our job as police officers is to enforce the law.
Clearly, a senior colleague like Mike Barton is entitled to his views and he has added his contribution to the national debate, but it would be ACPO's position that these are matters for parliament to decide.
We need in particular to be very thoughtful about setting clear boundaries, especially for young people, in relation to drugs, their misuse and criminal activity surrounding them.
We also need to take account of the fact that illicit drugs markets are dynamic and the wider issue is not just about Class A drugs. Issues like cannabis farms and new psychoactive drugs also create social harms and attract organised criminality.