Skip to main content

Sign up for our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values. Direct to your inbox.

For Immediate Release

Contact

Matt Sutton 212-613-8026

msutton@drugpolicy.org

Press Release

Drug Policy Alliance Statement on Sha’Carri Unjust Suspension from U.S. Olympics Team After Testing Positive for THC Consumed in Legal State

Prime example of how drug testing is yet another tool of the drug war, crushing opportunities–even for Olympic hopeful.
WASHINGTON -

American sprinter Sha’Carri Richardson, who wowed Americans with her record-setting win in the women’s 100-meter race at the U.S. track and field trials in Oregon last month, has been suspended from the Olympic team after testing positive for THC, the compound found in marijuana. Kassandra Frederique, Executive Director at Drug Policy Alliance (DPA) has released the following statement:

“Drug testing is yet another tool of the drug war, and it’s a failure. Sha’Carri’s suspension serves as a cautionary tale and a reminder of how insidious the drug war is in our everyday lives, far beyond the carceral state. Drug testing does nothing to show current impairment. The USADA must undo this archaic, inhumane, and unscientific policy.

“ Sha’Carri is a young, autonomous Black woman and she has the right to put whatever she wants in her body. She shouldn't have to apologize for the choices she makes to navigate her life. Yet she is being locked out of a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity she has fought her entire life for because she chose to use marijuana to cope with the grief of losing her biological mother. But let us be clear: trauma is not a prerequisite for all drug use.

“Sha’Carri apologized, mentioning ‘I know what I am not allowed to do, and I still made that decision.’  But the rules are inconsistent. Sha’Carri reportedly used marijuana in Oregon—a state where adult use is legal. These inconsistencies force people to be stuck in the middle, navigating unclear rules and being faced with lifelong consequences. We must end the drug war once and for all so that no one is subjected to contradictory and punitive rules about what they can and cannot put in their own bodies.”

Drug Policy Alliance has been leading efforts to end drug testing, including:

  • Launching “Uprooting the Drug War,” a campaign that exposes the insidious ways the drug war has taken root in six critical systems: education, employment, housing, child welfare, immigration, and public benefits;
  • Educating on the effects of drug testing (as seen in this fact sheet);
  • Urging the House to swiftly pass the MORE Act (H.R. 3617), absent of a harmful provision that was added to exclude federal workers of drug testing protections.

###

The Drug Policy Alliance is the nation’s leading organization promoting drug policies grounded in science, compassion, health and human rights.

'Infuriating Disappointment': Biden DHS Ramping Up Deportations to Haiti

"It is unconscionable for the Biden administration to resume deportation flights to Haiti, despite the country's ongoing political, economic, and environmental disasters."

Jessica Corbett ·


Architect of Texas Abortion Ban Takes Aim at LGBTQ+ Rights While Urging Reversal of Roe

"Make no mistake, the goal is to force extreme, outdated, religious-driven values on all of us through the courts."

Jessica Corbett ·


Ahead of Canadian Election, Bernie Sanders and Rashida Tlaib Endorse NDP

"Bernie, you have fought courageously for public healthcare, affordable medication, making the rich pay their fair share, and tackling the climate crisis," said party leader Jagmeet Singh. "We're doing the same here."

Jessica Corbett ·


US Urged to End Drone Strikes After Pentagon Says Killing 10 Afghan Civilians Was 'Horrible Mistake'

"That was not a 'mistake,'" said journalist Anand Giridharadas. "War crimes are not oopsies."

Brett Wilkins ·


40+ NYC Activists Arrested for Protests Against Banks Fueling Climate Emergency

"We're sending a message loud and clear that the little action that politicians and greenwashing CEOs have taken so far does not begin to deal with the magnitude of this crisis."

Jessica Corbett ·

Support our work.

We are independent, non-profit, advertising-free and 100% reader supported.

Subscribe to our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values.
Direct to your inbox.

Subscribe to our Newsletter.


Common Dreams, Inc. Founded 1997. Registered 501(c3) Non-Profit | Privacy Policy
Common Dreams Logo