IN THE NEWS..
RELEASE SUES THE TRANSPORT POLICE
Using sniffer dogs to identify people carrying drugs is wrong in principle and ineffective in practice – and we'll prove it in court
Sniffer dogs patrol tube and train stations all over the UK, with the sole purpose of detecting those in possession of drugs.
Release believes that this approach criminalises people disproportionately; it contravenes our right to go about our daily business without unjustified police interference and the considerable costs are a complete waste of taxpayer’s money.
There is no law which expressly allows the use of sniffer dogs by the police These types of operations target users not dealers and incur significant costs. With such poor outcomes this is clearly a waste of public finances.
For these reasons, Release is taking legal action against the British Transport Police (BTP) for breach of human rights, unlawful search and trespass to the person, regarding the use of sniffer dogs to detect drugs. Release Executive Director, Sebastian Saville was stopped and searched by the BTP at Camden Town underground station in June 2008 following a positive indication by a sniffer dog. Mr Saville had no illegal drugs in his possession.
The case is expected to reach the High Court later this year. If Sebastian and Release are successful in their claim, the police will be forced to desist from using sniffer dogs for the detection of drugs.
HASC QUESTIONS RELEASE DIRECTOR ABOUT COCAINE TRADE
Tuesday 23 June 2009
Mr Saville came to the Home Affairs Committee prepared to have a real discussion about how to effectively respond to cocaine use in the UK and instead the HOC seemed more interested in what was behind Release's 'Nice People Take Drugs' campaign, Mr Saville's past and present cocaine use and if Release was funded by gov money.
Bob Russell MP even went so far as to say that heroin users in the UK are responsible for the death of soldiers in Afghanistan which at best is the type of grandstanding more in keeping with his previous position at a London newspaper, not as a member of a Home Affairs Select Committee.
This exemplifies how closed minded so many of our politicians are when it comes to having frank debate on how we can more effectively manage drug use in the 21st century. Certainly this was a missed opportunity.
HOC Committee members
Rt Hon Keith Vaz (Chairman) (Lab) (Leicester East), Tom Brake (Lib Dem) (Carshalton & Wallington)
Margaret Moran (Lab) (Luton South), Ms Karen Buck (Lab) (Regent's Park & Kensington North)
Mr Gwyn Prosser (Lab) (Dover), Mr James Clappison (Con) (Hertsmere)
Bob Russell (Lib Dem) (Colchester), Mrs Ann Cryer (Lab) (Keighley)
Martin Salter (Lab) (Reading West), Mr David T. C. Davies (Con) (Monmouth)
Mr Gary Streeter (Con) (South West Devon), Mrs Janet Dean (Lab) (Burton)
Mr David Winnick (Lab) (Walsall North), Patrick Mercer (Con) (Newark)
RELEASE JOINS THE LONDON LEGAL SUPPORT TRUST
in the 5th London Legal Sponsored Walk 2009
Release staff walked the 10K London route to raise funds for the Release legal outreach service at drug clinics across London.
This service reaches people who would otherwise be highly unlikely to gain legal advice about their housing, benefits, debt or any other social welfare legal problem any other way . They are a vulnerable group of people for whom good social welfare legal advice and help can make a huge difference.
Fundraising target: £1,000.00
Donations so far: £ 1,680.00
Please donate to JUST GIVING
Team Members: Lorna Macfarlane, Kirstie Douse, Ann Fordham, Rupert George, Keith Edwards, Claudia Rubin, Niamh Eastwood and Sebastian Saville.
'NICE PEOPLE TAKE DRUGS' T-SHIRTS
Due to popular demand, Release has now produced some exclusive Nice People Take Drugs t-shirts. The meaning behind the slogan - that drug use comes in all forms - is most effective when it is endorsed by all sorts of people. If we are to break through the public's preconceptions about drug use and drug users, then we need this slogan to be supportred by as many people as possible.
FANCY SOME GUERILLA CAMPAIGNING?
We really want some good international images. (See flashcard link below) We need people to print the NPTD slogan in anyway they want and get some mates together [in your local area] and take photos for us.
All photos will go on the Release website and blog. Send pics to: email@example.com
Photo Slideshow: London, NYC, DC, Berlin . . .
MAKE YOUR OWN SIGN: DOWNLOAD FLASHCARD TEXT
SLIDESHOW.. Watch This Space
PIN UP BOARD..
READ ARTICLE IN THE GUARDIAN
To listen to conference speakers CLICK HERE
Read interview with Deborah Small, Executive Director of " Break The Chains "
in THE VOICE UK
" The high price paid by black people in the war on drugs "
PROF A.C. GRAYLING
The well-known British philosopher, Professor Anthony Grayling, writing in The Times this month, made clear his support for Release’s call for the decriminalisation of drug use.
He wrote, “We have too many categories of crime now, we have far too many people in prison, and society is far too unforgiving of things that should not be crimes at all: the example of using the criminal law to deal with drugs and prostitution is a glaring case in point.”
Professor Grayling is a long-time opponent of the UK government's drug policy and shares Release's view that the criminalisation of drugs only serves to increase their cost to health care, prisons and policing as well as unnecessarily stigmatising many sections of society. We thank Professor Grayling for his support and look forward to his future contributions to the debate.
RELEASE BILL OF RIGHTS..
Everyone is equal before the law and entitled without discrimination to equal protection of the law.
The Right to Employment..
Everyone has a fundamental right to work. Drug use in itself is not an obstacle to employment. Where problems at work arise, every person is entitled to be treated in a reasonable and rational manner.
The Right to Information..
Everyone has the right to accurate information. Ignorance and misinformation exposes drug users to unnecessary harm and can result in prejudice and mistreatment.
The Right to Education..
Everyone has the right to education. Education shall be directed to the full development of the human personality and to the strengthening of respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms.
The Right to Dignity..
Everyone has the right to be treated with dignity and will not be subjected to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.
The Right to a Minimum Standard of Living..
Everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the health and well-being of himself and his family, including all necessary social services.
The Right to Healthcare..
Everyone has the right to prompt, effective and appropriate healthcare. Lifestyle choices are not reason to deny this right.
The Right to Safety..
Everyone has the right to protection by the state. This includes the right to access resources which can reduce the harm caused by inherently risky activities.
The Right to Family Life..
Everyone has the right to family life and the importance of the family will be upheld and protected by the state. This includes support to those encountering drug use within the family.
Head of Legal Services and Deputy Director of RELEASE- Niamh Eastwood
Family at war after 'tough love' mother shops her drug-dealing sonREAD ARTICLE
"View Head of Policy & Communications at Release Claudia Rubin's, comment on today's news story on BBC South East News.
Nice People Use Drugs - Sarah Martin London 10k 2009
HCLU's '3 Days in 10 Minutes'
The Vienna NGO Committee organized a global NGO forum on the review of the implementation of goals set by the United Nations General Assembly Special Session on Drugs in 1998. More than 300 NGOs were invited to this Beyond 2008 forum from all regions of the world in order to discuss three objectives (NGO achievments, NGO involvment, drug policy principles) in three days (July 7-9, 2008).
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About me:.... .... ..
NATIONAL CENTRE OF EXPERTISE ON
DRUGS AND THE LAW
1967 - 2009..
DRUGS - THE LAW - HUMAN RIGHTS..
Who I'd like to meet:
RELEASE is the national centre of expertise on drugs and drugs law – providing free and confidential specialist advice to the public and professionals. Release also campaigns for changes to UK drug policy to bring about a fairer and more compassionate legal framework to manage drug use in our society.
Release believes that the present regime for the regulation of drugs will be regarded by future generations as one of the great policy disasters of the modern period. These arrangements result in far too many abuses of human rights, fail to protect individual and public health, erode respect for the law, undermine democracy and generate corruption. The War on Drugs is in fact a recipe for a society at war with itself, and this is what we find when we examine the state of global drug control.
The present system of drug control is the result of a complex and contingent set of historical factors and policy decisions. At the 2008 meeting of the UN drug control apparatus in Vienna, Antonio Costa—the head of the UN Office on Drugs and Crime and normally a staunch defender of the status quo—publicly admitted that the system was not ‘fit for purpose’.
Release’s vision is for a society in which the age-old human practice of using drugs is viewed as a part of the human condition. Rather than committing ourselves to the fantasy of a drug-free world—something that never has existed and never will—we should accept drugs as part of life, and educate and regulate to restrict their negative effects. Whether this happens through a reinterpretation and reconfiguration of the present structure, or requires a more radical overhauling of institutional and juridical arrangements, remains to be seen.
We campaign on a broad agenda for drug policy reform that includes:
• Greater investment in drugs education
• Fairer sentencing guidelines to prevent unnecessary incarceration of women
• Recognition that drug use is a personal choice and a civil right
• Recognition that the majority of drug use does not warrant interference from the state
• Increased access to support and health care services for problem drug users
We also campaign on specific issues which this year include:
• Hepatitis C – access to treatment for all
• Drug paraphernalia – legal distribution of all harm reduction equipment
• Drug mules – fairer sentencing guidelines
• Medical cannabis – access to drug for pain relief for a number of medical conditions
Do you think human rights apply to drug users?
Do you believe that a better system for managing drugs and drug use could be found?
Do you want the laws to change in this country?
Do you want to be kept informed about all issues relating to drugs?
If your answer to these questions is ‘YES’ then you should JOIN RELEASE.
If you would prefer not to become a member of Release, but would like to support our important work, please make a DONATION now.
As a charity, Release relies on grants and donations to continue its vital work and needs your support. If you have any queries about the membership packages on offer, please contact us...
388 Old Street
LONDON EC1V 9LT
Helpline: 0845 4500 215
Administration: 020 7749 4044
RELEASE STAFF.. ..
Sebastian Saville - Executive Director
Niamh Eastwood - Head of Legal Services
VOLUNTEER LEGAL ADVISORS:
Gary Sutton - Head of Drugs Services
VOLUNTEER DRUGS ADVISORS:
Claudia Rubin - Head of Policy and Communications
Chris Hallam - Researcher
Keith Edwards - Administrator
Rupert George - Theory & Application
Ronnie Hooberman Chair
Dr Christine Ford
Anthony Hyams - Treasurer
SEE STAFF PICS
ROLL OF HONOUR.. ..
Amongst the many, past and present, who have helped Release over the years our thanks go to:
Timmy Abassi • Steve Abrams • Desiree Abul Malik • Richard Adams • Douglas Adams • Don Aitken • Jonathan Aitken • Nicholas Albery • Simon Albury • Tariq Ali • Robert Allan • Martin Allen • Patrick Allen • Richard Allen • Tony Allen • Jim Anderson • Tony Andrews • The Anonymous Donor • Richard Anstey • Apple • Jeffrey Archer • Michael Armitage • Mike Ashton • Lord Avebury • Prof. AJ Ayer •
David Bailey • Tony Banks MP • Desmond Banks • Edward Barker • Ray Barnet • Ann Marie Barton • Sam Baxter • Beamish • Philip Bean • Dale Becket • Barbara Beeze • Tony Bennet • Monty Berman • Sallie Berriff • Lord Beaaumont • Rev. Eric Blakebrough • Chris Blackwell • Richard H Blum • Graham Bond • Sir Herman Bondi • Compendium Books • Derek Boshier • Joe Boyd • Billy Bragg • Richard Branson • Peter Brook • ROBERT MARK BROUDIE • Arthur Brown • Sue Bryer • Pete Brynd • Yolande Burgin • Anthony Burton • Johnny Byrne •
David Caleb • Lord Campbell • Duncan Campbell • Sonny Campbell • Antonia Cannon • Alasdair Cant • Bernard Carnell • Simon Caro • Michael Cashman • Pratrap Chitnes • Julie Christie • Eric Clapton • Pam Clarke • Margie Clarke • Caroline Coon • Andy Cornwell • Piers Corbyn • Paul Crane • Francis Crick • Eric Crowther •
Jeremy D'Agapeyeff • Geni Day • Dr Pat Day • Bill Deedes • Melita Denaro • Dame Judi Dench • Felix Dennis • Jeff Dexter • David Dimbleby • Jonathan Dimbleby • Dave Dimmler • Keith Dolan • Megan Doolittle • Liz Dowell • Alison Downie • Nick Drury • Spooks Duckett • Ubi Dwyer • Chris Ealand • Maggie Eisner • Michael English • Brian Eno • Eric The Tramp • The Exodus Collective •
Jenny Fabian • Malcolm Fairburn • Tom Fawthrop • Vicky Fisher • Harry Fletcher • Pink Floyd • Rudi Fortson • James Fox • Wendy Freaker • Andy Friend • John Furniva • Tony Garnet • Tony Gifford QC • Stephen Gilchrist • Allen Ginsberg • Bill Godber • Jane Goodsir • Clive Goodwin • Tracy Granger • Jane Greening • Germaine Greer • Mike Grieve • Annie Grocott • Nicola Gunn • John Guy •
Andy Haines • Juli Hall • Richard Hamilton • Zach Harazi • Tony Harding • Richard Harkinson • Rufus Harris • Tim Harris • Lee Harris • George Harrison • Tony Hart • Hawkwind • Sarah Hart • Michael Hastings • Paul Hayes • Jimi Hendrix • Anthony Henman • Mel Henry • Lorraine Hewitt • Brian Hillard • David Hockney • Claire Hodges • John Hopkins • Michael Horowitz • Darcus Howe • David Howson • Dave Hucker • Dr Sam Hutt (aka Hank Wangford) • Marsha Hunt • Roger Hutchinson • Andrew Huxley • Brian Inglis • ISDD • IT •
Mick Jagger • Jennifer Janes • Jennifer Jenkins JP • Simon Jenkins • Sir Elton John • Jeb Johnson • Dr CRB Joyce • Dick Joyce • John Kaplan • Christine Keeler • Gary Kemp • Denise Kenny • Andy Kershaw • Thom Keyes • Michael King • Rosemary Kirkcaldy • Edward Klein • Ian Knight • Alexis Korner • Phil Kossoff • Herbert Kretzmer •
R.D. Laing • Fran Landersmann • Kevin Lawless • Jeff Lazarus • Father Ken Leach • Lizzie Leahy • Julian Lee • David Leigh • Rowley Leigh • John Lennon • Don Letts • Roger Lewis • Walter Lloyd • Allan Lodge • Louise London • Lord Longford • Victor Lowndes •
Frankie Macaulay • Sir Paul McCartney • Roger McGough • Scarlett McGwire • Soft Machine • Penny MacLucas • Tim Malyon • Mike Mansfield QC • Anne Marie Barton • Dr John Marks • Rita Marley • Anne Marshall • Keith Martin • John May • Keith Mayne • Lord Melchett • Eileen Meredith • Dr Jonathan Miller • Penny Mellor • David Mellor • Di Melly • George Melly • Paddy Melly • Walter Merricks • Middle Earth • Lorna Mikhelson • Barry Miles • Razi Mireskandari • Misty In Roots • Alexander Mitchell • Adrian Mitchell • Dr Martin Mitcheson • DS Geoff Monaghan • Clive Morrick • Joy Mott • Dennis Muirhead • Dr Anne Mully • George Mully • Bridget Murphy • Maggie Murphy-Ferris • Nell from Rocky Horror • Richard Neville • Chris Newell • Suzette Newman • Bob Nightingale • Gill Norman-Bruce • Christine Nossiter •
Hilarie O'Haolran • Donal O'Kelly • David Offenbach • Andrea Oliver • Ray Onofrie • Sonia Orwell • Oz Magazine • Anita Pallenberg • Carmela Palosci • John Peel • Gareth Peirce • Eileen Pembridge • Lyn Perry • Dom Phillips • Jim Phipps • Peter Plouviez • Harry Podlewski • Roman Polanski • Martin Polden • Mo Poole • Prince • Beth Prince • Partrick Procktor • The Prodigy • Andrew Puddephat • PC Frank Pulley • Push • Monty Python's Flying Circus •
Eda Rak • Brian Raymond • Mike Reid • Tara Rez • Tom Robinson • Kim Roser • Serens Rule • Ruth Runciman •
Pat Sampson • Jeremy Sandford • Lyne Sargeant • Dean Sargeant • James Saunders • Nicholas Saunders • Gerald Scarfe • Justin Schlicht • Michael Schofield • Anthony Scrivener QC • Bob Searchfield • Will Self • Harry Shapiro • David Shaw • Heather Shaw • Ian Sheratte • Bernie Simons • Roni Size • Arthur Smith • Tony Smythe • SOMA • Renegade Soundwave • Spooks • HB "Bing" Spear • Brian Spiro • Robert Spooner • Anne Stanesby • Lindi St Claire • Dennis Stayte • Sue Steward • Vicky Strangroome • Nina Stratford • John Swannell • Gay Switchboard • Rev Terry Tanner • Kevin Thompson • Di Took • Diane Torr • Mike Trace • Jeff Travis • Mary Treacy • Prof Arnold Trebach • Penelope Tree • Mike Tristram •
UFO • Freddie Venn • Tony Visconti • Gordon "Scripto" Venables •
WX..Steve Warshal • Harold Weston • Lynn Wainwright • Brian Walden • Nigel Weymouth • Ben Whitaker • Clarrissa White • Michael White • Mark Wilkinson • Heathcote Williams • Roger Winfield • Wings • John Witton • Prof Richard Wolheim • Christian Wolmer • Jasper Woodcock • Annette Woods • Lady Wooton • Martin Wright • Robert Wyatt • Judge Charles Wyzanski •
Professor Jock Young • Murray Yugin • Prof Norman Zinberg •
and to the multitude more who were there when it mattered and know how much remains to be done,
- Status: Single
- Here for: Networking, Friends
- Zodiac Sign: Taurus
- Occupation: UK CHARITY