UNODC awarded Spanish Gold Medal of Merit for its commitment to countering drug dependence
2 April 2013 - UNODC Executive Director, Yury Fedotov, today accepted on behalf of UNODC, the Gold Medal of the Order of Merit of the National Drug Plan. The prestigious award was given to UNODC by the Minister of Health, Social Services and Equality, Ana Mato Adrover, in front of Government staff and representatives of the media at the Ministry's headquarters in Madrid.
After receiving the award Mr. Fedotov said, "I am extremely grateful to the Spanish Minister of Health, Social Services and Equality for this award. The Gold Medal of the Order of Merit is a fitting tribute to all of UNODC's staff, especially those working in difficult circumstances in the field. It will serve as an inspiration for the entire organization to work even harder to assist problem drug users in line with the international drug control conventions."
In his acceptance speech, Mr. Fedotov noted that UNODC's work included curbing demand through prevention of drug use, prevention of all its social and health consequences, and treatment of people suffering from drug dependence, as well as activities that support the work of countries to restrict supply. He also praised the depth and breadth of Spain's own National Drug Plan and said Spain was an "exemplary partner" in the area of HIV and AIDS.
"The true strength of a Member State, and an organization such as UNODC, is our ability to work in partnership to connect national approaches to those that are regional and global. Spain is an excellent partner because it believes in building on its national drug strategy to share its skills and experiences at the international level," said Mr. Fedotov.
A translation of the citation for the Gold Medal of the Order of Merit reads, "The Ministry of Health, Social Services and Equality, in consideration of the merits and extraordinary circumstances and relevance of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, and because of its incessant labour at the global level for the development of international drug policies, which place public health and the reintegration of people at the centre, and because of its leadership and global coordination in these areas, and in recognition and in appreciation of its work in recent years, has decided to award the Gold Medal of the Order of Merit of the National Drug Plan."
The Gold Medal of the Order of Merit of the National Drug Plan is a Spanish civil award created by Royal Decree. It aims to reward individuals and public or private entities for exemplary delivery of activities carried out at preventive care and rehabilitation in the field of addiction and other related areas.