Ad Campaign Highlights Opposition To Drug War

Ad Campaign Highlights Opposition To Drug War
Posted by FoM on October 03, 1999 at 12:40:52 PT
By Sandee Burbank 
Source: MAMA
In a national advertising campaign, a broad array of public health, religious, civil rights and criminal justice reform advocates is calling on political leaders "to admit the War on Drugs has failed." 
The advertisement, signed by 73 organizations representing several million members, also said "Law enforcement cannot solve the public health problem of drug abuse." A copy of the advertisement can be viewed at: advertisement, which will appear this month in The Nation, National Review, New Republic, Reason, The Weekly Standard, The Progressive and Mother Jones, is based on an appropriations report sent to Congress by the coalition. It is part of a campaign to shift drug policy to a public health, rather law enforcement-dominated approach by the DC-based National Coalition for Effective Drug Policies. The advertising campaign begins as Congress enters the appropriations season. Among the signatories on the ad are: ACLU; American Psychological Association; Association of Schools of Public Health; Center for Women Policy Studies; the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, General Board of Church and Society; Institute for Policy Studies; Justice Policy Institute; NAACP; National Association of School Psychologists; National Black Police Association; National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health; National Organization for Women Foundation (N.O.W. Foundation); Rainbow/PUSH Coalition; Service Employees International Union, AFL-CIO; Unitarian Universalist Association; The United Methodist Church; Volunteers of America; YWCA of the USA. "A new political consensus is emerging that recognizes the drug war will never be an effective strategy for dealing with drug abuse. The time is fast approaching when the war on drugs will be an unpopular political position," claimed Kevin Zeese, co-chair of NCEDP and President of Common Sense for Drug Policy, which organized the sign-on campaign. "Americans expect a more effective approach to drug control." "Our current national dug policy is confusing, alienates those who need help the most and is very punitive in nature," commented Sandee Burbank, Executive Director of Mothers Against Misuse and Abuse, a signing organization. "It is time we judge all drugs by the same standard, put in place policies that reduce the risks of all drug use and provide adequate help for those who do have problems." The organizations called on Congress to develop an "effective strategy" to combat drug use which should: o Provide sufficient funding for after school programs to divert youth from drug use; o Provide funding to make treatment available on request -- currently only half of those who want treatment can get it; o Provide sufficient funding to stem the health emergencies of HIV/AIDS and Hepatitis C; o Provide funding for alternatives to incarceration for non-violent, low-level drug offenders; o Examine the racially disproportionate impact of current drug policy, as well as its adverse effects on women, especially poor women and their families; o Undertake an examination of current drug policies and develop alternative approaches. For a full copy of the appropriations report, contact: Kevin Zeese at 703-354-5694.Common Sense For Drug Policy IMMEDIATE RELEASE CONTACT: Sandee Burbank Mothers Against Misuse and Abuse 2255 State Road Mosier, OR 97040 (541) 298-1031 (Phone or Fax) mailto:sandee Newshawk: Deborah Angel
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