Our comrades at the Italian Network of People who Use Drugs (ItaNPUD) wish to share this tribute to their peer and friend Andrea Fallarini. Original in Italian is below the English.
On March 12th, our comrade and friend Andrea Fallarini passed away due to end-stage liver cancer
Andrea was a great person. He was kind, generous, and brilliant, the kind of intelligence made of empathy and love that understands things through the heart and the guts, not just the head. Throughout his entire life, he worked alongside the most powerless and the most disenfranchised, managing, among other things, a homeless shelter in Turin.
His work has always been about helping people find their autonomy and take back their lives through self-determination. He was one of the first, and still one of the most outstanding, activists for the rights of people who use drugs. He was involved with a squat when even in the so-called alternative social centers being a user wasn't easy, and people using drugs could be often sidelined, stigmatized, and looked down on. Thanks to him, many people changed their minds about people who use drugs and drug use in general.
He worked with the "Isola di Arran," a group that did a lot about HIV and Hepatitis C when Hep C was not a priority as it is now: he launched a campaign called "Without the C," claiming the right to treatment for all people living with HCV, especially people who use drugs. Many people who have been able to access Hep C treatment in Turin and other parts of Italy owe something to him.
INPUD is devastated to hear of the passing of Jude Byrne last Friday, especially with the knowledge that palliative pain treatment took time to be provided following her diagnosis.
Jude was an extraordinary woman, mother, grandmother, friend and drug user activist who touched the lives of countless people around the world. She was a fearless advocate for people who use drugs over a career spanning decades, holding numerous roles with the Australian Injecting and Illicit Drug Users League (AIVL) as well as serving as a board member of the International Network on Health and Hepatitis in Substance Users. Globally Jude often served as a community representative for people who inject drugs on international forums and was a founding member of INPUD and acting Chair of INPUD Board for close to a decade.
INPUD’s Monthly Digest is intended to keep our members and supporters informed about INPUD’s activities month to month, as well as updates from national/regional networks and relevant news in drug policy. The following updates cover February 2021.
Before getting into the digest, we would like to thank everyone who has already taken the time to fill out INPUD’s Membership Survey. We have more than doubled our responses from last year, and there is still time to fill it out before the 5th March deadline if you have not already. Please find the survey here and fill it out today!
Download the Monthly Digest as a PDF by clicking here.
GLOBAL ADVOCACY AND EVENTS
Global AIDS Strategy 2021 - 2026
INPUD continues to monitor progress on the adoption of the new Global AIDS Strategy 2021 – 2026. The joint letter we submitted last month with EuroNPUD, Harm Reduction International and YouthRise raising concerns we had about revisions to the strategy was well received by the UNAIDS strategy team, and the latest draft has incorporated many of the points we raised regarding meaningful community involvement, funding for key populations, decriminalisation and removing age barriers for young people who use drugs.
In line with the demands laid out in the Vancouver Declaration, INPUD seeks to promote the health and defend the human rights of people who drugs globally by challenging and exposing stigma, discrimination and the negative impacts of criminalisation on peers and communities. We primarily do this through amplifying and representing peers in global advocacy at international agencies such as the United Nations and those undertaking international development work, such as the Global Fund. Additionally we support the growth and development of national and regional peer networks engaged in advocacy, service delivery and community building. We believe people who use drugs must be meaningfully represented in the decision-making processes which affect our lives, and that peers posses unique insight through our lived experience which can be utilised to strengthen health services and harm reduction programmes.
The following represent some of our core advocacy positions and examples of actions, publications or other documents we've produced to support this work. This list is not comprehensive, but comprises our key organisational positions which we feel are non-negotiable when it comes to seeking the highest attainable quality of life for people who use drugs.
Decriminalisation of all drugs
INPUD Monthly Digest - February 2021
INPUD’s Monthly Digests are intended to keep our member and supporters informed about INPUD’s activities month to month, as well as updates from national/regional networks and relevant news in drug policy. This edition covers February 2021.
Black History Month 2021: Acknowledging History and Working Towards Racial Justice
February marks Black History Month in the United States, an annual observance where we take time to remember the important people, events and achievements of Black communities and their critical role in shaping the world as we know it today. Read INPUD's statement celebrating the enormous contributions of Black peers and communities while also calling on all of our members and supporters to take time and critically evaluate this work in the context of racial justice.