Paul Cherashore probably provided the most interesting conversation this year for Solutions Journalism: Covering addiction. He talked about the fact that people who use drugs aren’t just people suffering from addiction — there are also people who use drugs that aren’t fighting addiction. One of the most interesting points is the critique that most media outlets cover people suffering from addiction. This made me realize that the project Jenny and I have outlined doesn’t have a space to represent drug users who don’t suffer from addiction. Should we make that space, and if so, how?
The other interesting thing that Cherashore mentioned was an effort from his drug use advocacy to create policies for police to follow when they come across someone who has been using drugs. Because drug use is so severely criminalized, it’s hard to work in recovery and productive responses to that. This is particularly interesting for the story I’m working on. I’ll reach out to Cherashore and see what I can learn from him about this effort to change policy.