2018 was an incredible year for Students for Sensible Drug Policy, as you’ve seen in our annual report, read about in our annual top 10 list, and even heard in the news. We’re grateful for our 5,000+student members who are investing time in keeping their communities safe. We’re proud of the alumni who are carrying their SSDP values into their work and lives. Thank you to all of the volunteers, advocates, donors, leaders, and mentors who understand that a strong and supported youth movement is critical to any such change.
And finally, thank you for defending the values of justice, safety, and education as we steer this monumental social change movement.
Please take a look at this month’s report card to learn more about our recent accomplishments, new activists and chapters, SSDP in the news, and recommended reading as we get 2019 off to a strong start for reform!
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- Ferris State University
- University of Pittsburgh
- Dublin City University
- University of Texas Austin
- University of California Santa Cruz
- SUNY Binghamton
- University of Vienna
- DePaul University
- United Methodist University
- EPSD Mexico
Simon Kozak ‘18 of SSDP Czech Republic organized a panel discussion at his school to talk about cannabis legalization. The speakers were the head commander of the national anti-drug headquarters, a psychologist, an addiction specialist, and a professor who advocates for full legalization. The panel featured discussion on student activism and Simon introduced SSDP to the 80 attendees.
SSDP Israel met with members of the Israeli Knesset as part of a stakeholders meeting regarding harm reduction at music festivals. Knesset member Tamar Zandberg initiated the meeting after two high profile deaths at a music festival over the summer. At the meeting, they discussed drug testing at festivals, funding and institutionalizing safe spaces, investing in the education of safe use, cooperation between safe spaces and medics, and why police intervention is more harmful than helpful.
EPSD Mexico members attended a forum on Sacred Plants at the National Anthropology University where they shared information about the work of EPSD and discussed amending medical marijuana legislation so it is more accessible to low-income patients.
Moronfolu Adeniyi ’14 visited the Ministry of Health in Ogun State and met with the Director of Pharmaceutical Services to advocate for collaboration between the government and SSDP in Ogun State promoting health programs for people who use drugs and access to pain medication.
SSDP Nigeria hosted a Twitter chat regarding public health and drug policy, with a focus on discussing health impacts from policy on people who use drugs. They received over 30,000 impressions from the chat.
Riley Tillitt ‘16 was selected as a 2019 Rhodes Scholar and will be pursuing post-graduate work at Oxford in public policy and criminal justice as a means to advance drug policy reform.
The University of Pittsburgh SSDP chapter successfully lobbied the heads of the department for student conduct to actively promote the school’s medical amnesty policy.
Eight Officers from the James Madison University SSDP chapter were certified by Virginia REVIVE, a part of the Virginia Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services, as trainers for the Naloxone Administration program.
Chicago’s DePaul University chapter successfully changed campus policy through ending the school’s ban on naloxone. Student leaders are continuing to work with administrators to ensure DePaul’s new naloxone policy is implemented in a holistic way that provides harm reduction approaches to student substance use.
University of California Santa Barbara SSDP hosted our 2018 Pacific Regional Conference, bringing together students, alumni, and community members from the region for a weekend of learning and networking. Session topics included mass incarceration and environmental justice, all-drug decriminalization, lobbying training, the future of psychedelics in medicine, and empathy and harm reduction.
Occidental College SSDP held an event, “From the Festivals to the Streets: A Workshop to Fuse Psychedelic Harm Reduction and Community Mental Health” facilitated by SSDP Alumnus Irina Alexander ‘07 to cap off their “SSDP Week,” an educational campaign where the chapter distributes information throughout campus on drugs and harm reduction.
Dominique Coronel ‘18 from DePaul University SSDP and DePaul Alumnus Amy Hildebrand ‘16 met with Illinois’ Attorneys General to discuss the future of marijuana policy reform in Illinois.
NEW CHAPTERSUnited States
- Washington State University
- University of Texas Arlington
- University of California San Diego
- Brooklyn Technical High School
- Universidad de Puerto Rico, Recinto de Rio Piedras
- Duke University
- EPSD Ecuador
- SSDP Zimbabwe
- University of Nairobi (Kenya)
- Maynooth University (Ireland)
- SSDP2019 | March 29-31, 2019 near Chicago, IL
IN THE NEWS
- Students practice using naloxone, learn to help overdose victims
- It’s Time for the Psychedelic Renaissance to Join the Harm Reduction Movement
- APD aims to reduce misdemeanor arrests with cite-and-release reform
- Connecticut marijuana advocates bolstered by Massachusetts’ first sales
- After losing brother to heroin, Rhodes scholar from Twin Cities to focus on drug policy
- Shaleen Title: Let’s talk about legalizing and regulating all drugs, not just marijuana
- Student-led club works to change drug laws in Virginia – The Breeze
- Student Association trying to change SU’s drug and alcohol policy – The Daily Orange
- UT students remain unaware of medical amnesty laws – UT The Daily Texan
- Cannabis and Campuses: Colleges Caught in the Middle of Marijuana Laws
- 4Front Partners With Students For Sensible Drug Policy To Boost Fundraising Drive – PRNewswire
SSDP Staff recommended reading/links/resources
- Vilmarie: Dan Bigg is a Harm Reduction pioneer and his overdose doesn’t change that
- Jake: Let’s Talk About International Cannabis Policy
- Lauren: Psychedelic Sisters in Arms: a series of personal stories on consent, gender, and sexual violence against women in psychedelic communities
- Luis: How to tell compelling stories while avoiding exploitation
- Rachel: Shaleen Title: Let’s talk about legalizing and regulating all drugs
- Hannah: The U.S. Needs to Decriminalize Drug Possession Now
- Elise: Me and White Supremacy Workbook