Drug addiction is widespread across Iran. It plagues populations of all ages, from drivers to bazaar vendors to government employees and even college students. Various government policies have been tried to address the matter but so far have failed to lower the numbers of addicts. A large share of these failures is due to faulty perspective and policies in confronting this social phenomenon.
Drug addiction has not been considered a crime since the drug-law reform in 2010. According to Article 19 of Iran's drug law, someone who abuses drugs without suffering from addiction should be punished. Before 2010, addicts were treated as criminals, but addiction itself is no longer considered a crime. Addicts might be punished for other infractions such as abusing drugs in public.