Parent Organization: Service, Political, and Social Action Groups

We are dedicated to educating the Brown community on the harms caused by the so-called “War on Drugs” and working to change legislation (in Rhode Island and the U.S.) in order to pursue a more compassionate, rational, and effective way of dealing with the nation's drug problem. The war on (some) drugs has left millions of people with real drug problems untreated, millions of mostly poor people of color incarcerated, and spent billions of dollars mostly on supply-side military intervention and prison expansion. This war is being fought in our names—“protect the children!"—and we have the responsibility and the power to end it.
Students for Sensible Drug Policy was founded in 1998 when the Drug Provision to the Higher Education Act (HEA) was passed. The HEA was created in the 1960s to provide federal financial aid to students of low and middle-income families. The Drug Provision denies federal aid to anyone convicted of a drug crime. Since the Drug Provision took effect in 2000, over 160,000 students have been denied financial aid. This flawed policy punishes students twice, disproportionately affects people of color, and only affects students from lower-income families. Denying someone an education will never help them, and will never do anything to solve or nation’s drug problem.
SSDP trains students to organize campaigns, lobby legislators, work with the media, and build their general skill sets needed for effective political action.