Repairing the harms of the drug war

Open Society Foundations


Repairing the harms of the drug war

8 September 2022

The war on drugs is a U.S.-made human rights disaster that has deliberately targeted Black communities and other communities of color and ethnic minorities around the world. To this day, the drug war is a tool of authoritarianism and social control, discharged through targeted policing and mass incarceration. As the creator and main funder of the war on drugs, the United States has a responsibility to promote reparations for harmed communities, both at home and across the globe.

In the United States, the legalization of cannabis and other positive drug policy reforms has been accompanied by a substantial push for reparations for the Black and Indigenous communities most negatively affected by the drug war. In the U.S. and other countries with emerging cannabis markets, however, activists are fighting white-led and often foreign corporations to prevent revenue being diverted away from reparations into corporate coffers.

In recognition of June 26—the Support Don’t Punish Global Day of Action—panelists from the U.S., Brazil, and the Philippines discuss the consequences of drug policy enforcement, work to dismantle the drug war within their own communities, and how reparations are critical to creating a more just post-prohibitionist future.

Speakers: Queen Adesuyi, Cathy Alvarez, Andrea Ritchie, Nathália Oliveira.

Date26 June 2022


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