We are glad to present the five best posters submitted to our poster contest targeting the UNGASS on drugs this year!
We received many submissions to the "Let's Get Real About Drugs" poster contest launched by Drugreporter in February. Some of them were really good at highlighting the wrong approach manifested in the global war on drugs – others unfortunately missed the point, and featured anti-drug messages instead. The Drugreporter staff selected five posters which we found the best in terms of originality, creativity, appeal to a world-wide audience, and clear messaging. Then we asked a few international drug policy reform activists to help us select the best three.
We are especially delighted that all these five posters were produced by young artists from different parts of the world – please have a look at the posters with the short intro sent by the authors!
1. The Winner of the Contest: "A Useless War" by Flavio Velluti, Uruguay
"Prohibitionism is failing, leaving nothing but damage and waste of resources. This allegorical illustration explains the simplistic and ridiculous character of the prohibitionist system. Aiming for a critical view, an almost childlike drawing emphasises the simplicity of the system and ridicules its methods, represented by the monotonous and far-reaching arms. The current situation does not allow society to continue on this path, and requires the regulation of the market as an alternative to defeated prohibition."
2. Second Prize: "Grasp this!" by Meaghan Li, New Zealand
"Drug reform is being negotiated by governmental bodies and behind close doors, but true social reform is born from the hearts and minds of members of the public. We are long overdue for a shift in how we perceive drug use and addiction. Decades of misinformation, stigma, taboo, and prejudice have led us to this point. Change lies in compassion, and in our willingness to view problematic drug users as fellow human beings deserving of support, dignity, and empathy."
3. Third Prize: "See the Whole Person", a collaboration of Mon San Sebastian and Anton de Vera from NoBox Philippines
"People who use drugs are exactly that: people. People who swim, who create art, who love their children, who teach, who sing — who live whole, colorful lives. In each one of us is a desire to turn who we want to be into who we can be. When we look through a lens that shows the whole person, we create a world where each of us thrives. And who doesn't want that?"
4. "Breaking Down the Double Standards: Aren't We All Drug Users After All?", by Nuno Pinto, Anca Dima and Clara Abdullah, Portugal
"This poster is the result of an artistic collaboration between Anca Dima (illustration) and Nuno Pinto (graphic design), based on a concept by the team of IN-Mouraria, a harm-reduction centre for people who use drugs in Lisbon, Portugal. The main idea of the poster is that the stigma associated with illicit drug use is far more prominent than in the case of other legal substances. Demonising illicit drugs also puts an obstacle in the way of seeking treatment, for fear of societal judgement and being labeled as junkies. This comes in the context of a more political discussion on the importance of regulating drug markets, emphasising that: a) most uses of substances are not problematic; b) prohibition has not reduced the prevalence of drug use; c) regulation of drugs would allow for the monitoring of quality, and for safer use, as in the case of tobacco, alcohol or pharmaceutical products."
5. "The War on Us", by Laura Krasovitzky, Mexico
"As one of the areas most affected by the drug war, Latin America offers front-row seats to the devastating effects of prohibition. After more than 40 years of failed policies and militarisation, the blatant truth is that drugs are not the enemy. This is not a war on drugs. It is a war on people and the environment. It is a war on all of us."
We will be exhibiting these posters at two sites in New York City during the UNGASS:
Museum of Drug Policy at UNGASS (245 Park Avenue (corner of Park & E 47th St., April 19-21, 2016; open 10:00 AM to 10:00 PM).
Youth Demonstration and Art Installation organised by the Students for Sensible Drug Policy in New York (Dag Hammarskjold Plaza, E 47th St, New York, NY 10017 on the 18th of April, from 3:30 to 6 PM).
Please help us and the artists to distribute these posters widely! If you would like to print and exhibit these posters, please email us at rightsreporter(at)rightsreporter.net!
Posted by Peter Sarosi