February 29th was LEAP Day – this rare occurrence provided us with the opportunity to do something different. What could be more different than a collection of police, military, magistrates, MPs, public figures and supporters joining together and taking a stand for drug law reform?
LEAP UK officially launched in the House of Commons. We were privileged to have a room full of engaged participants. We’ve gathered together a collection of media from the day. Here’s what people had to say about us and the subject of drug policy reform:
Sir Richard Branson welcomed LEAP UK and stood with us for reform
The day started with our own release in collaboration with Virgin Unite:
On The Influence, we were really rather taken with this piece from Sebastian Michael, saying:
“The statements come like the phrases in a Bach fugue: They are based around a theme, they pick up on each other’s line and modulate it, give it a new nuance, allow for another iteration to create another resonance that counterpoints in harmony what has been expressed before. Together, when it’s the instruments in Bach, the sound they produce is heavenly music; when it’s the speakers at the launch of LEAP UK, it is perfect, even common, sense.”
And we were pleased to have most of the morning on LBC Radio dedicated to us with James O’Brien (on paywall subscription) which included a phone in with LEAP UK Chairman, Neil Woods and friend of LEAP, Tom Lloyd.
We were also lucky to have support from eminent figures of medicine with Doctor Christian Jessen in attendance and tweeting throughout our launch. Sam Branson also tweeted with enthusiasm, and author of Chasing the Scream, Johann Hari spoke with a great deal of eloquence and emotive energy in the House of Commons. We thank everyone sincerely, and this is just the start!
Jason Reed is the Executive Director for LEAP UK. As a civilian, Jason has worked in drug policy as a writer/blogger for sites such as the Huffington Post, Virgin, The Independent, The Influence, London Real TV, Sundog Pictures, Politics.co.uk, and is a resident writer at VolteFace.me. He has worked on a number of multimedia projects, including Associate Producer to the Oscar nodded feature documentary, The Culture High, and the upcoming documentary GrassRoots: The Cannabis Revolution. Jason has conducted a number of public figure interviews on the subject of drugs and takes an interest in the social impacts of punitive policies - he's the host of the podcast 'Stop and Search' which is on the prestigious Distraction Pieces Network under rapper and actor Scroobius Pip. Twitter: @JasonTron