Debunking the War on Drugs

by Hungarian Civil Liberties Union

Dear Drugreporter Supporter,

The new year has brought significant and positive changes in the life of Drugreporter: having originated with the Hungarian Civil Liberties Union (HCLU, we are continuing our work as part of a new NGO, the Rights Reporter Foundation (RRF). The Drugreporter brand, website and video equipment now belong to the RRF. This change will allow us to devote greater time and energy to improving our work towards international drug policy reform and harm reduction - more videos, more stories and more training. 

Please have a look at our brand new website, where you can read more about the organisation! Our fund raising website is on Global Giving is still active, please support us with a donation!

I am glad to inform you that two new activists joined the Drugreporter crew in January - Igor Kouzmenko and Alexey Kurmanevsky, drug user activists and alumni of our video advocacy training, who will enrich our website with a Russian language video blog, the DrugUserNews.

Dose of Science on Drugreporter
We are happy to announce a new column on Drugreporter, the "Dose of Science". This new blog aims to educate the public about drug science. Every month, the summary of a peer-reviewed scientific paper will be presented.   

UNGASS Without Harm Reduction? No Way!
Governments are not only shying away from reforming global drug policy, but failing to even mention harm reduction in the first draft of the UNGASS outcome document. Civil society must stand up for harm reduction! 

Luxembourg’s Drug Policy: Jekyll and Hyde
Inside Luxembourg's drug consumption room - read the story of our guest author about drug policies in one of the smallest but most interesting countries of Europe. 

All the best,

Dear Supporter,

if you could not attend the International Harm Reduction Conference in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, don't worry: the Drugreporter video advocacy team was there to film the event. We were invited by Harm Reduction International to be the official film makers of the event, the short video we produced was screened at the closing session of the conference.

Please read our report about the hazy dawn of the harm reduction decade and watch our conference video!

If you are interested in key speeches and sessions, you can click here and watch our video collection!

This year we were also invited to lead the International Harm Reduction Film Festival, where several exciting documentaries were screened, highlighting burning issues, such as human rights abuses, best practices of harm reduction, community involvement and overdose prevention. I was really glad to see that many of those who attended our video advocacy trainings in previous years submitted their movies to the festival - and frankly, they were really good. For example, I recommend you to watch "Fight HIV, Not Drug Users!", a movie produced by our alumni, Dhojo Wahengbam from Manipur, India. It's amazing to see how the impact of our work is multiplied by our video advocacy trainings!  

I also would like to call your attention to another important video - Harm Reduction: Stuck in the Transit Zone - we produced in Tbilis, Georgia, where we attended the Road to Success regional dialogue - and interviewed representatives of community leaders and policy makers about how the funding of harm reduction programs can be transitioned to domestic funds. 

All these activites would not be possible without your generous donations. Please, consider to support our work in the future and tell your peers to do the same! 

Best regards,

Peter Sarosi

Room for Change campaign logo
Room for Change campaign logo

Drugreporter, in cooperation with seven other NGOs, proudly presents the new international campaign Room for Change—because we need to change the way we respond to urban drug problems.


In 1987, the United Nations decided to observe June 26 as the International Day Against Drug Abuse and Trafficking. For many years, this day was celebrated by some governments with anti-drug rituals, such as public burnings of seized drugs or televised executions of drug mules. In the last 10 years, however, June 26 has been turned into an day of action by civil society to promote drug policies based on human rights and public health.

We need a new approach


 This year, in cooperation with Support. Don’t Punish, we launch a campaign in eight European cities—Athens, Belgrade, Bratislava, Bucharest, Budapest, Porto, Sofia and Warsaw — to educate and mobilize the public to support innovative alternatives, such as drug consumption rooms, to punitive drug policies.


 The Room for Change campaign targets those people whose lives are affected by street drug use, either because they have a relative who uses drugs or because they live in a neighborhood where many people inject drugs. In each of the eight cities, there are huge problems related to injecting drug use: HIV and hepatitis infections, overdose deaths, drug litter and nuisance.


Our campaign website provides you with multimedia content from each city about the current situation and local challenges. To reduce these harms, we must take a new approach. Instead of criminalizing drug users and pushing them to the margins of society, we need programs that distribute sterile equipment and information, as well as create a safe and hygienic environment where people can use their drugs without harming themselves and without disturbing the public.


Drug consumption rooms


 We have learned from the experiences of cities like Zurich, Vancouver and Copenhagen that drug consumption rooms (DCRs) can serve as entry points to the treatment system. As such, DCRs are not a solution in itself: they work only if they are part of an integrated urban drug strategy.


 This drug strategy should be built on four pillars: prevention, treatment, harm reduction, and smart law enforcement. If cities create a drug coordination system and provide adequate budget to implement the "Four Pillars Drug Strategy," we can significantly reduce drug problems. In our petition, to be sent to the decision makers of these eight cities, we urge them to do so.


We ask you to sign our online petition, to invite your friends to sign it, and to share our campaign website on Facebook and Twitter! Please make a donation today to support our campaign! 



Dear Drugreporter Supporters,

this March, our video advocacy team attended the 58th session of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs, the largest drug policy gathering in the world, to find out how governments and NGOs feel about the prospects of drug policy reform. We produced a series of short thematic videos, to give you an overview of the current state of political debate on the burning issues of international drug control: about China's plan to bring ketamine under international control, about the debates on death penalty, about the strong presence of civil society at the meeting and about next year's UN General Assembly on drugs. 

Please follow this link and watch & share our videos!

Best regards,

Peter Sarosi

Dear Drugreporter Supporters!

The Drugreporter team had a very active year in 2014: we produced 94 short movies from Switzerland to New Zealand, we organised video advocacy trainings in two countries, we organised media campaigns to raise awareness on the benefits of harm reduction, we created several infographics and published 142 news articles on our website.

Please read our annual report and learn more!  

Drugreporter, through its network of activists from several European countries, will provide you even more videos and news updates about major drug policy developments in 2015. 

Our latest movie, supplementing the report of the Open Society Foundation, tells the story of Dutch drug policy model and hihglight its successes, as well as challenges ahead of it. 

Please help us to advance drug policy reform and harm reduction all over the world with its innovative advocacy tools - make a donation today on GlobalGiving!

Best regards,

Peter Sarosi
Drug Policy Program Director


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Organization Information

Hungarian Civil Liberties Union

Location: Budapest - Hungary
Website: http:/​/​
Project Leader:
Peter Sarosi
Drug Policy Program Director
Budapest, Pest Hungary

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