Press Release

Today: Big Public Day of Action on Eve of United Nations General Assembly Special Session on Drugs

Major Events Feature Religious Leaders, Families in the U.S. and Abroad Impacted by the Drug War and the Arrival of Caravan from Central America

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<p>Tony Newman 646-335-5384</p>

On April 19 to 21, the United Nations will host the most significant high-level international drug policy event in almost two decades, the General Assembly Special Session on Drugs (UNGASS). Global leaders will come to the UN to debate advances and challenges in global drug control, while individuals and organizations from around the world will travel to New York to demand a change in course that breaks with the failed prohibitionist policies of the past. On April 18, dozens of organizations will be joined by hundreds of individuals from around the world in a big day of public actions led by community activists, faith leaders, families, students, growers, rights defenders and drug policy experts, among others. Below is a compilation of events on April 18th. You can also find the full calendar of events for the week at:

Public events for April 18

Public Rally

Where: Foley Square

When: 12:30PM

What: Beginning with an international prayer service for those murdered during the recent years of extreme drug violence in Central American and Mexico, hundreds will gather to welcome the Caravana Por la Paz, la Vida y la Justicia, traveling from Honduras to New York City for UNGASS. Traveling with the Caravana are community and faith leaders from Central America and Mexico, along with families who have lost loved ones to drug war violence calling for an end to global drug war policies that perpetuate violence, political corruption and instability without any meaningful impact on drug use.

Families Unite To Tell Their Stories

Where: Outside United Nations HQ on 44th and 1st Ave NY, 10017

When: 2PM

What: A of a group of 50 families from Afghanistan, Canada, the Philippines, Kenya, UK, Belgium, Honduras, the US and Mexico will gather to tell their stories of loss and of lives that have been wrecked by the drug war and are now campaigning for change.
More information here.

Art Installation & Youth Demonstration

Where: Dag Hammarskjold Plaza, NYC (Opposite UN building)

When: 3:30 – 6:30 PM

What: A youth-oriented demonstration organized by Students for Sensible Drug Policy in which students and young people will create art installations to visually demonstrate how current drug policies negatively impact global youth.  
More information here.

Interfaith Service of Compassion and Care

Where:  Abyssinian Baptist Church, 132 138th St btw Adam Clayton Powell & Malcolm X Blvd

When: 6:30 – 10 PM

What: The evening before New York State's Democratic Presidential Primary, national African-American faith leaders will join with international faith and community leaders to denounce the failures of the drug war, calling for current policies to be replaced with a public health, human rights and compassionate approach to drugs. Speakers include Reverend Calvin Butts, Abyssinian Baptist Church; Dr.  Reverend Frederick Haynes - Senior Pastor (Texas, Dallas); Dr. Reverend Edwin C. Sanders II; Dr. Reverend William Barber II; Dr. Reverend Leah Gaskin Fichue; Professor Obery M Hendricks; VOCAL-NY
More information here.

Drug Trafficking in Latin America