Friday, November 30, 2007

Drug policy reformers from across the country and around the world are gearing up for their annual coming together, The 2007 International Drug Policy Reform Conference. From December 5-8, at least 1,000 activists, including more than 200 students, will descend on the French Quarter to share ideas and battle plans, network, and prepare for another year of work to reform drug laws.

Indeed, New Orleans will be the place to be - and what better place to spend a December weekend than the balmy cultural capital of America, rich with drinks and jazz and a nightlife that puts other cities to shame. Those lucky enough to attend the conference, set in the Astor Crowne Plaza on legendary Bourbon Street, will not have any problems finding things to do: the DPA pamphlet reads like a travel guide.
Old world ambiance, hot jazz, cool eats and sizzling night life awaits
you. Once you arrive at The Astor Crowne Plaza, you will be
within walking distance of many landmarks of New Orleans’
heritage, including: courtyards and iron-laced balconies,
famous restaurants and galleries, Bourbon Street, the mighty
Mississippi River ... and, of course, legendary Jackson Square.
The theme of this year's conference, "Working Towards a New Bottom Line," captures the spirit of the event: bringing together experts and activists, law enforcement and reformers who seek to change the law, students and professionals, and challenging them to together forge a new vision of drug law in America. DPA writes in its pamphlet, "We believe that change is possible in our nation’s drug policies, but that doing so requires all of us to challenge what we think we know and want to believe." Next week in New Orleans, a diverse group of dedicated people will be brought together to work towards one goal, and the potential is enormous.

The conference will focus on a number of specific issues. How can reformers do their job better? What effect does drug use have on our culture and on our politics? What does the most recent research say about drug use and drug policy? How can we reduce the harm caused by drug use? What should we do about bloated prison populations? Answers to these questions, as well as a film festival, an awards dinner, and - of course - the companionship of more than 1,000 like-minded activists, are to be found next week in New Orleans.

SSDP wishes good luck to all attendees.

Have fun.

1 comment:

doctorj2u said...

You picked a great time of year to visit the city. Try a Revellion dinner, an all night affair, served at many of the city's great restaurants.
If family comes with you you may want to act like a local and go to"Celebration in the Oaks" a Christmas light wonderland at City Park.
Here is a list of French Quarter events in December.
And to count your blessings, go on a disaster tour and see the horrors still left from the levee breaks. In that way you will know the truth of "A Tale of Two Cities".