Blog Post

Seen and Heard at #ReformConf15

Melissa Franqui

Last month, the Drug Policy Alliance hosted its biennial International Drug Policy Reform Conference. Over 1500 delegates for change representing over 71 countries packed the session rooms of the Crystal Gateway Marriott in the Washington D.C. metro area.

For an incredible overview of the people and events that made this year’s Reform Conference a rousing success and a seminal moment in drug policy history, check out this video produced by our partners at HCLU, who also captured DPA’s Ethan Nadelmann’s inspiring opening speech, entitled “We Are Movement for Freedom.”

Ethan and other incredible speakers during the opening plenary challenged the drug policy movement to learn and strategize on how to reform the policies and laws that harm, ensnare and incarcerate millions of people every year.

Many echoed these sentiments throughout the conference but none where so powerful in urging for clemency for people who are incarcerated for non-violent drug offenses as Kemba Smith and Jason Hernandez, both clemency recipients and advocates for sentencing reform.

Press articles, thousands of tweets, hundreds of Instagram and Facebook posts marked what were three days and nights of amplified advocacy and galvanizing momentum to end the failed drug war.

DPA created this photo album in deep gratitude of all of our speakers, panelists and facilitators who made this one of the best Reform Conferences, ever!

We were all motivated by the voices for reform at #ReformConf15, and most beautifully by Crystal Monee Hall, who debuted her new song at the Achievement Awards dinner on Saturday evening.

More videos and photos to come! Keep checking our website for conference updates, and Save the DATE for 2017: October 11-14 in Atlanta Georgia!

Melissa Franqui is the communications coordinator for the Drug Policy Alliance.

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