We’re leading the way together

DPA Annual Report

  • 0

    arrested for marijuana
    in the U.S. annually

  • 0

    behind bars in the U.S.
    for a drug law violation

“Never before has the ground been more fertile for a fundamental shift in our nation’s drug policies.”
  • Ira Glasser
  • Ethan Nadelmann
    Executive Director

Are You Ready To Help Us Make the Drug War History?

Ending Marijuana Prohibition

One of our top priorities is ensuring responsible and inclusive legal regulation

2015 was a year we worked on implementing the successes of Washington, D.C., Oregon and Alaska, while making tremendous efforts to lay the groundwork for marijuana legalization initiatives likely on the ballot in California, Nevada, Arizona, Maine and Massachusetts and medical marijuana initiatives in Florida, Arkansas, Ohio and Missouri.

united states map united states map with color

Our nationwide achievements

  • Marijuana legalization
  • Medical marijuana
  • Potential marijuana legalization ballot initiatives in 2016
  • Potential medical marijuana ballot initiatives in 2016


The historic CARERS Act was introduced, a sweeping reform bill that would end federal interference with state medical marijuana laws.

Almost half a million people, disproportionately Black and Latino, are locked up in the U.S. for nothing more than a drug law violation.

Tackling the Drug War and Mass Incarceration

We took huge steps to shift the focus from punishment to humane solutions.

  • New York City

    Our efforts led to a drop in annual arrests for marijuana possession in NYC, from 51,000 in 2011 to under 17,000 in 2015.

  • New Jersey

    We led the hard-fought battle to reform the broken bail system in New Jersey where 75% of the 15,000 people in its jails were awaiting trial rather than serving a sentence.

  • New Mexico

    In New Mexico, we led a successful effort to pass the nation’s most far-reaching civil asset forfeiture reform so that law enforcement can no longer confiscate someone’s property without convicting them of a crime.

  • California

    We broke new ground in California, passing two bills through the legislature to reduce the likelihood that immigrants are deported for minor drug possession.

Promoting Health, Reducing Harm

Addressing an urgent crisis: overdose deaths

Beginning a decade ago, DPA took the lead in addressing an urgent crisis: overdose deaths, which recently surpassed auto accidents as the leading cause of accidental death in the U.S. It’s why we amped up our efforts to make naloxone, an overdose antidote, more easily accessible.

Here’s what you helped us do :

An unlikely ally

Once opposed to our efforts, Gov. Christie signed a DPA-approved bill to expand prevention efforts.

Saving lives

New Jersey police officers saved the lives of over 1,819 people with naloxone.

A major step

CVS became the first chain pharmacy to sell naloxone without a prescription.

In Congress

The federal Stop Overdose Stat Act, drafted and supported by DPA, passed its first committee and gained over 50 cosponsors.

Starting out

We built support for the first supervised injection facility (SIF) in the United States.

2015 2016

2015 Financials

Allocating our funds efficiently

  • Total Expenses

    FY 2015
  • Total Expenses

    FY 2015
  • Program Expenses
  • Management
  • Fundraising

Looking Ahead

The end of the tragic war on drugs is within our grasp but we must reach for it — together. Are you with us?

Learn more about our achievements:

Read the full report here