Washington DC- Mothers from around the country will join with law enforcement and students at the National Press Club on May 2nd in honor of Mother’s Day. The press conference will launch a new coalition of national organizations that will represent mothers, police and students that seek to finally end the disastrous drug war. The NORML Women’s Alliance, Law Enforcement Against Prohibition,Student for Sensible Drug Policy and others will share powerful stories of losing loved ones to the criminal justice system, and the social repercussions of prohibition. The coalition will unveil the “Mom’s Bill of Rights” and highlight a series of activities around the country timed to Mother’s Day.
Moms United to End the War on Drugs Bill of Rights
Mothers, parents and families are leading the charge to end the violence, mass incarceration and overdose deaths that are a result of current punitive and discriminatory drug policies. We are building a movement to stop the stigmatization and criminalization of people who use drugs or who are addicted to drugs. We urgently call for health-oriented strategies and widespread drug policy reform in order to stop the irresponsible waste of dollars and resources, and the devastating loss of lives and liberty.
We declare and assert these basic rights for all mothers:
1. We have the right to nurture our offspring, and to advocate for their care and safety.
2. We have the right to be free from the shame and stigma caused by negative labels encumbering our children who suffer from addictive disorders and the parents who raise them.
3. We have the parental right to policies and practices that recognize addiction as a disease in need of treatment, rather than a willful behavior to be criminalized.
4. We have the right to be represented by informed policymakers who work to reduce the barriers to education, housing and employment opportunities that our sons and daughters encounter after they have been arrested for drug possession.
5. We have the right to honest, accurate, safety-first drug education in our schools, rather than scare tactics.
6. We have the right to respectful, nondiscriminatory harm reduction strategies that honestly address and treat the chronic relapsing disease of addiction, and to policies that are informed by and consistent with scientific research, compassion and reason.
7. We have the right to life-saving overdose prevention and intervention strategies, which should not be impeded or pre-empted by criminal justice policies of arrest and incarceration.
8. We have the constitutional right to protect our homes and families from the unreasonable search and seizure tactics of drug “warriors”.
9. We have the right to communities where our children can live, learn and play without fear of drug war violence.
10. We have the right to have our roles as parents protected and supported, rather than disregarded
and terminated by incarceration for nonviolent drug offenses.
11. We have the right to protect the future of all our children from a drug war which is waged
predominantly against families, as well as communities of color and poverty.
12. We have the right to speak out publicly to end the war on drugs, which has become a war waged
against our own families and communities, in order to protect the futures of our children.
Endorsed by: A New PATH, Mothers Against Teen Violence, Broken No More, GRASP, St. Ann’s Corner of Harm Reduction