Support. Don't Punish.

July 19, 2019

'Support. Don’t Punish' is a global campaign to raise awareness of the harms caused by the criminalization of people who use drugs. The campaign was created in 2013, in acknowledgement of the need to change laws and policies that impede access to harm reduction interventions, and to promote respect for the human rights of people who use drugs.  

Street Health was one of the first organizations to promote harm reduction. Our harm reduction services include: stem (smoking) and needle kits, afternoon drop-in, volunteer kit assembly, evening drop-in, street outreach, the Community Harm Reduction Response Team and the Overdose Prevention Site (OPS).

On June 26, 2019, Street Health’s evening drop-in program hosted an event for the global day of action. Community-based musicians/song writers worked with drop-in participants to compose a song about the support don’t punish theme with an aim at enacting positive social change. 

Frank Coburn, a well-known local advocate and harm reduction mentor hosted the event attended by more than 70 people.  Local Harm Reduction Workers, NormaJean and Monica addressed the need for effective drug policies through heart felt speeches, and then the community broke out into song:

Patty, Chaudhry & Monica

Patty, Chaudhry (Drop-In Coordinator) and Monica

 

SUPPORT Don’t PUNISH

The way it is, hasn’t always been

gaps in the system could be seen

what we need every time: everything new and clean

Lives lost

Unnecessary

Have naloxone to carry, to carry

 

The drug war ain’t about justice,

shame and blame

It’s the elitist’s game

It’s not about right or wrong 

It’s just a corrupted government song

 

If only harm reduction was around a long time ago

my good friends would still be here

We keep making the same mistakes its clear

We’re losing friends ever day

And it’s the ones who don’t help themselves that need our help the most

It’s time to stand up and have our say:

Be healthy, be proud, stand up and be loud  

 

The drug war ain’t about justice,

shame and blame

It’s the elitist’s game

It’s not about right or wrong 

It’s just a corrupted government song