Fr / 19:00

Public Lecture: „Fight along with the Junkie Union!“

Heroin Users’ Activism in Rotterdam, 1980-2000

Gemma Blok, Open University Heerlen, NL

Aquarium Berlin (Südblock), Skalitzer St. 6, Berlin

In 1980, a group of heroin users in Rotterdam founded the “Junkie-Union,” a protest organization against police raids and the overemphasis on abstinence-oriented therapies in addiction treatment. Along with Protestant Paulus Church, the union opened an experimental site, the Perron Nul (Platform Zero), which offered a space where users could buy drugs 24/7 and access methadone maintenance, clean needles, and basic care (toilets, showers, coffee, etc.). This controversial facility ran for nearly a decade before being shut down (1987-1994). This lecture examines archival material from the Rotterdam Junkie Union to analyze the rise and fall of Perron Nul as an arena for contestation about the “Junkie’s” marginalized citizenship.

Presented within the framework of the International Research Project »Governing the Narcotic City – Imaginaries, Practices and Discourses of Public Drug Cultures in European Cities from 1970 until Today«

Free admission, no registration required.