Paul Cherashore shared his story today. Speaking about many things such as Naloxone distribution companies. He also states he is “not really an active user anymore.” He is trying to reduce the harm caused by active drug, “There are always policies and projects made for us. However, drug users are rarely ever invited to it,” Paul said. He also stated that you cannot have a redeeming value until you have become sober. “Even when talking about the “safe injection site,” they were not consulted about it,” Paul stated. He believes in Drug user’s rights, and he makes a good point by saying most people haven’t even heard about it.

Should a person have the right to self-medicate their own bodies? People do self-medicate. But, validate it to themselves because it’s from a doctor. He questions the whole system of prohibition, because people are going to use the drugs anyway, so a better system needs to be put into place. “Regulations and hang-ups always happen and the people who make decisions like the raid on El Capamento, said they would take these people and find them housing,” Paul said. But, as Paul stated, no one realized how hard it would be to find a place for everyone to live. The ones making the decisions have no idea what it is like to be a person with an addiction and because of that reason alone, they will never understand.

He also spoke about social exclusion. “Social Exclusion really is a violation of human rights,” said Paul. This week’s speaker is talking to us from a different point of view and I’m kind of at odds. Normally, we hear from Law Enforcement, Counselors, People in Recovery and their families. We are hearing the opinion of the drug user and he is stating that the active drug user has rights as well. So, when officials are putting money into a safe injection sight for addicts to use, should the active user have an opinion that should be taken into consideration?

Also, he has issues with the laws and policies put into place in our nation. Specifically, he is stating, the more drug use is suppressed, the more dangerous it becomes. Paul has an organization named POPI, Philadelphia Overdose Prevention Initiative. He says the cause is to prevent overdoses from happening. However, not many people know about it, because people don’t usually want the opinion of the active drug user. When dealing with cases like this, should the opinion of the active drug user be taken into consideration? Or should it be ignored because some feel they are not in the right state of mind to make a logical decision. As it goes on, only time will tell.