The film ‘Targets’ is a story about the women in Ukraine who are branded as “drug addicts” and who are being destroyed by the state today. These women are targets, and a real war is being waged against them. The film is an attempt to understand why this is happening and what needs to be done to stop these deaths.
On the one hand, the state finances a program of substitution maintenance therapy (SMT), which is a method of treating drug addiction with proven effectiveness. Many women in Ukraine receive this therapy. This gives them the opportunity to restore health and social ties, find work, devote time to family and children, etc.
However, on the other hand, as soon as a woman begins to receive this treatment, she is immediately diagnosed with drug addiction. At this moment, as a result of being given this status, she loses all her rights. In practice, this is very often used by social services, which can take children from such women and deprive them of parental rights. Such mothers are forcibly separated from their children. Babies who could live with a loving mother end up in shelters. Social and other services act in such cases based on discriminatory and outdated norms of Ukrainian legislation.
Today, specialists from the National Hotline on Drug Addiction and Substitution Treatment and paralegals from the All-Ukrainian Association of Drug Addicted Women (VONA) are helping such women. But the struggle for children and for their rights sometimes takes all their strength, and women lose hope and die.
There is a lot of pain and despair in this film. But I would like to hope that the stories shown in it will be able to change the situation in the very near future.