In 1988, four friends co-founded Global Exchange to fight a worldview based on greed, domination, and unvarnished worship of power. We envisioned building a robust U.S. movement capable of creating change from the grassroots, powered by people-to-people ties. This year we celebrated our 25th anniversary, and we are proud to honor the dedication of people like you who have sweated and sacrificed to forge a working alternative from the ground up.
One year after the Newtown shootings, we are stunned that even in light of an unnecessary tragedy of such magnitude that our representatives in Washington have failed to legislate any changes to our current gun laws that make it absurdly easy to buy and traffic guns with impunity.
Throughout 2013 we've sought to underline the connections linking the violence in communities like Newtown and Trayvon Martin’s hometown in Florida, to more distant places like Cuernavaca, Mexico. Bad gun laws combined with mental health problems, vigilantism, and the failed war on drugs create a toxic brew.
Our Mexico Human Rights program has worked with allies in Mexico, the U.S., and Canada to call for an end to the violence and militarization of our continent that are the fruits of a drug war strategy driven by ever more discredited U.S. policies of drug prohibition and easy, legal access to military style weaponry.
This fall, we organized a "Voices of the Victims" tour that presented the urgent messages of Mexican poet and activist, Javier Sicilia and several other drug war victims to large public audiences in key cities across the U.S. and Canada. Canada and the U.S. consume more drugs than any other country, the U.S. jails more people than any other country, and a shamefully disproportionate number of these prisoners are black and Latino.
Our tour called for deep reforms of our drug policies, sensible gun regulations, and the international strategy featuring indiscriminate military responses to drug use, both harmless and problematic prohibition in Mexico, and over-crowded prisons in the U.S.
Some highlights included:
We’re proud of what we’ve done together. But to achieve the visions we set out all those years ago, we’re going to need your continued support.