6 Jun. 2024

Crack Wave in Berlin: What We Can Learn from the History and Experiences of the ‘Motherland of Crack’

Since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic, Berlin has grappled with another pressing health issue characterized by visible indicators of poverty, aggression, and neglect: crack cocaine.

The intertwined nature of crack addiction with homelessness, impoverishment, and bleak prospects challenges conventional approaches to drug help services, which often find their efficacy strained in the case of crack.

In light of this, we seek insights from Sanho Tree, Fellow at the Institute for Policy Studies in Washington, DC, who has helmed the Drug Policy Project since 1998. Our inquiries to him include:

  • How did cocaine, traditionally associated with wealthy people, evolve into crack, a drug predominantly affecting impoverished communities in the USA?
  • How have communities impacted by crack responded beyond mere “law & order” strategies?
  • Does crack cocaine continue to hold relevance as a drug phenomenon in the contemporary American landscape? What measures have authorities and affected communities undertaken to mitigate its most pressing challenges?

To provide a local perspective on addressing crack cocaine issues in Berlin, we are pleased to welcome Astrid Leicht, who has been managing, developing, and realizing (innovative) public health projects for 25 years at “Fixpunkt e.V.” in Berlin, and Niklas Schrader, spokesperson for domestic and drug policy within the Left Party parliamentary group in the Berlin House of Representatives.

This collaborative event is a joint initiative between the Rosa Luxemburg Foundation’s New York City office and “Helle Panke” e.V. – Rosa Luxemburg Foundation Berlin, and will be conducted in non-native-speaker English.

WHEN: Thursday, June 6, 2024, 7:00 to 9:00 PM

WHERE: Helle Panke e.V. – Rosa-Luxemburg-Stiftung Berlin, Kopenhagener Str. 910437 Berlin

COST: 2 euros

Top photo: Kreuzberg neighborhood, by Fabian Kunow.