Meet the families. The stories below tell how the members of Anyone’s Child have been negatively affected by the drug war, and why they chose to become part of this campaign. Please read and share.
I am still battling with the changing tides of grief but the constant fire that burns in my heart, screams “the law must change”.
My friend might still be alive if it weren’t for the stigma created by our drug laws.
We need to move past the notion of the criminalisation of drugs and stop victimising young Black people.
We are convinced that if drugs were regulated our son would still be with us and our lives would not have been torn apart.
I believe that current drug policy is the biggest barrier to recovery.
My dad was in and out of prison for using and selling drugs.
Luke died on his last day of school from an accidental drug overdose.
The drug and mental health services failed my son.
My son’s story has helped open up discussion about addiction but so much more needs to be done.
If Daniel’s drugs were properly regulated he would be here now – graduating from university, travelling, pursuing a career, having a family of his own.
Age 23, my handsome, lively, beautiful son has died. I believe Ben would still be alive if he had known what he was taking.
Without illegality and the stigma that attends it Kevin could have sought help much earlier in his addiction.
I would sleep more easily if I knew that my daughter’s supply of powerful drugs was in the hands of a GP instead of criminals.
My brother died because heroin is illegal and it has left huge, heart-breaking holes in my family.
My son needed a change of law that would recognise his need and treat him accordingly.
Maricela’s family has been torn apart by the drug cartels empowered by prohibition.
My son was addicted to alcohol – a cheap, lethal and poorly regulated drug.
I believe my daughter would be alive today if she hadn’t had to buy heroin on the street.
Karyn is separated from her partner, because of excessively harsh US drug laws.
Having lost four sons to the drug war, I can safely say that the current war is not a war against drugs trafficking, nor against drugs themselves. It is a war against families.
My only child might still be alive if ecstasy was regulated.
My cousin and my closest friends have died because of wrong-headed drug policies.
I lost my partner, and my son lost his father, because heroin users are criminalised.
I lost my brother because his drug use was criminalised and stigmatised.
If his dose of heroin was regulated, Aidan might still be alive today.
I lost my two sons to overdoses that may have been preventable.
I believe that the prohibition of drugs is the main factor behind this violent situation in my country.
Our son’s life has been blighted by the UK’s drug laws.
After decades of violence and instability, legal regulation of coca has brought peace and prosperity to my community.
My daughter’s death made me see the need for drug policy reform.
My brother was murdered because drugs are left in the hands of criminals.
We lost our son, Danny, to addiction.
From what I’ve seen, Poland’s harsh drug laws do more harm than good.
My brother died from a synthetic drug overdose. Bad policies and lack of education cost him his life.
My daughter might still be alive if the government had moved the drugs discussion into the 21st century.
My brother was killed in a drug deal gone wrong.
We lost two sons to heroin because of the drug war.
My two sons are imprisoned due to mandatory minimum sentences for drug offences.
Me, my family and my community were displaced because of the drug war.
I lost my son to drugs, because US laws meant he didn’t get the help he needed.
The drug laws stopped my son getting the medical care he desperately needed.
My husband died because he had no way of knowing how pure or potent his drug of choice was.
My brother needed compassion, not criminalisation.
My friends and I were harmed because drug laws prioritise punishment over care and support.
My nephew might still be alive if he had been able to obtain his heroin from a doctor, rather than a street dealer.
No parent should discover their child’s body – but, given current legislation and criminalisation of users, this is unlikely.
I wish we could do things differently, so that drugs weren’t sold on the streets but regulated…
Dylan will be forever 21, his brother is now an only child and the dinner table will always have an empty chair at it…
Mwasuma might still be alive if he hadn’t been criminalised for his drug use and forced to use unregulated drugs.
My experience as a police officer has shown me that our drug laws do not keep communities safe.
Hypocritical and inhumane drug laws killed my sister.
My brother would be so much safer if drugs were treated as a health issue.
Punitive drug laws in Kenya have failed to protect my son.