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Project January 14, 2018

The Psychological Toll of Duterte's Drug War: Mental Health in Low-Income Communities


Image by Pat Nabong. Philippines, 2017.
Image by Pat Nabong. Philippines, 2017.

Since July 2016, the death toll of drug-related killings in Philippine President Duterte's drug war has reached at least 7,000, according to local media. Almost every week, bodies of suspected drug dealers and users, who are mostly from low-income communities, show up along highways and residential areas. In many cases, police raids or drive-by shootings by masked vigilantes wake the entire neighborhood as people are killed in their homes and in front of their families.

This multimedia project explores the psychological toll of the drug war on witnesses and relatives of slain drug suspects. It also examines the numerous barriers to mental health services and what is being done to address this issue.


navy halftone illustration of a syringe