Serving BIPOC & Low Income Communities
We're Committed to Making Psychedelic Healing Available to All People
When indigenous medicines find newfound popularity in the modern world, it is essential to respect and honor the cultures and people who have permeated plant healing throughout history. That history is what makes personal growth through psychedelic use possible today. Devastatingly, the descendants of those cultures are the ones that have been negatively impacted the most by the prohibition of psychedelics, namely Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) communities.
Though the conversation surrounding BIPOC discrimination and social equity is much larger than psychedelics, we believe that psychedelics can be an integral part of the fight for equality. Psychedelic healing should be accessible to everyone, regardless of the color of your skin or your socioeconomic status. That’s why we pledge to emphasize serving BIPOC and low-income individuals: because everyone deserves the opportunity to heal.
How We Improve Access to Healing
- One way we do that at Psychedelic Passage is to destigmatize the conversation surrounding psychedelics. As thoughtful discussions become more prevalent in communities of color, more BIPOC individuals will begin to normalize and explore using psychedelics for healing. And as those individuals benefit from intentional psychedelic use, they can serve as role models in their communities.
- Another way we serve this goal is to provide free information to anyone seeking to learn more about psychedelics and how to use them safely and effectively.
- And finally, we’ve established a fund that subsidizes the costs of our psychedelic preparation, trip sitting, and integration services specifically for BIPOC and low-income individuals.
How You Can Help: Donate
We are asking you to join the fight to normalize psychedelics and provide equal access to everyone. If you choose to make a donation, it will be earmarked to directly benefit a BIPOC or low-income individual in need of psychedelic healing.
History of Psychedelics and Indigenous Americans
Discrimination and lack of access to healthcare for Indigenous Americans continues to be an ongoing issue in the U.S. But the inadequacies of our current healthcare system to serve native populations aren’t limited to just physical health. The suicide mortality rate of Native Americans and Alaskans is 1.7 times higher than all other U.S. races combined, highlighting a concerning disparity. Though there are several factors that contribute to this issue, the fact remains that America underserves the mental and physical health needs of its Indigenous Peoples.
Historically, Native American tribes have a long record of intentional psychedelic use; namely with datura, peyote, and ceremonial tobacco. However as a result of the U.S. government’s prohibition of indigenous ceremonial rituals, this use of these medicines faded. We acknowledge that Native Americans have been subjected to historical trauma stemming from centuries of violence and the stripping away of culture.
As a result, many Native Americans turned to alcohol as a coping mechanism. We refute the damaging myth that Indigenous Peoples are genetically predisposed to alcoholism. Instead, we can objectively see it is a result of their continued discrimination that persists to this day. It then becomes clear why there is a lack of healing psychedelic use among these same people. We believe that the restoration of ceremonial and ritualistic psychedelic use can aid in the effort of overcoming this trauma.
Healing Communities of Color
Psychedelic use among BIPOC communities is lower than other segments of Americans. Black citizens have been subject to serious ethical violations in the name of medical research in America’s history, and the War on Drugs was used to systematically disenfranchise communities and incarcerate Black and brown individuals.
It’s no wonder why BIPOC representation in clinical studies and illicit psychedelic use is low: the social and legal consequences are higher for BIPOC identifying individuals. In 2017, the percentage of people arrested for drug violations who were Black was 27%, despite the fact that Black Americans make up roughly 13% of the population. The irony is that these communities are the ones who could benefit most from the healing potential of plant medicines, yet have higher instances of social and criminal repercussions.
Emphasizing Low-Income Individuals
We also recognize that though racial discrimination and disenfranchisement are major issues in their own regard, they are not the only barriers to accessing plant medicines. 1 in 5 Americans are not getting the mental health treatment they need, citing financial costs as one of the top contributing factors. Psychedelic medicine can be a great addition to an already over-strained mental health system in America, and we understand the importance of dedicated service to low-income individuals. We believe that a lack of financial resources should not preclude anyone from seeking the healing they deserve.