I have 15 years experience in the prison system working with the entire spectrum of people impacted by drug laws, from the victims of crime and their families, to drug-addicted offenders. I struggle to understand why governments promote the failed War on Drugs with misguided ‘Tough on Crime’ rhetoric, but continue to allow organised-crime to flourish by maintaining drug prohibition, which only results in a lucrative and essentially unchecked black market in drugs.
I have worked to the level of Deputy Governor and elite police units. I have degrees in Business and Correctional Management, and a Certificate IV in Alcohol and Other Drugs, as well as some other Diplomas. I am currently undertaking a Masters of Criminology.
I took a 20-month break from the prison system to work as the Chief Executive Officer of a not-for-profit organisation in the community sector. I restructured the organisation to allow it to better represent the client base, especially with the National Disability Insurance Scheme about to be rolled out.
I am the founder and president of Law Enforcement Against Prohibition (LEAP) Australia and have seen and read enough to know that the ‘War on Drugs’ is an abject failure and that drug supply should not be controlled by organised crime. I am also on the board of a number of community organisations.
Paul can be contacted at email@example.com
Stacey Dowson is the principal director and lawyer at Dowson Turco Lawyers.
She was admitted as a Solicitor of the Supreme Court of NSW in 1996 and has practised in a broad range of areas including the community sector and more recently in private practice. Stacey represented the two men in the 'No War on the Opera House' case.
Stacey is passionate about drug law reform, both as a lawyer and also generally as a member of the public. She frequently reminds her clients who have been charged with drug possession that her firm would prefer to make its money elsewhere. Indeed, her lawyers who represent such clients often make representations as to the triviality and victimless nature of drug possession offences. She has seen firsthand the damage a charge of drug possession can have on a person who has otherwise never been in contact with police.
Stacey is proud to be a member of the gay and lesbian community of Sydney and is a passionate advocate of gay and lesbian equal rights, and women’s rights more broadly. Stacey is adamant the drug laws need urgent reform as she sees how the current laws and government approach to drugs adversely and disproportionately impact on the gay and lesbian community.
Stacey can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org