Stop the Harm is a diverse, broad, and powerful movement of NGOs from around the world who have united around one common purpose: rectifying the catastrophic failures of the current global drug policy regime through campaigning for a new course firmly grounded in health, compassion, and human rights.
The global drug policy system is well and truly broken. Despite aiming to ‘protect’ people from drugs, its punitive approach has instead increased the harms of these substances, punishing and demonizing the people and communities most impacted by them. This punishment has disproportionately impacted people and communities of color, indigenous peoples, and the economically marginalized, while stoking public health crises by restricting access to essential medicines and exacerbating the spread of HIV, hepatitis C, and other blood borne viruses.
This brutality, cruelty, and inhumanity must be halted now. We cannot wait another day while these abuses are carried out with impunity. The Stop the Harm movement has arrived at a critical juncture for global drug policy. From April 19-21, 2016, a United Nations General Assembly Special Session (UNGASS) dedicated to reviewing progress on ending “the World Drug Problem” is being held in New York. At the last UNGASS on Drugs, held in 1998, global leaders pledged to secure “a drug-free world”— a goal that is not only unrealistic but has given rise to four decades of a global drug prohibition that has been deemed nothing less than a disaster, wasting trillions of US dollars and inflicting untold human suffering along the way.