About Filter

    Filter launched in September 2018 and is based in New York City. Our mission is to advocate through journalism for rational and compassionate approaches to drug use, drug policy and human rights. We cover these and many other, related areas.

    Filter was co-founded by Will Godfrey and Sarah Beller. It is owned and operated by The Influence Foundation, a nonprofit organization. You can follow Filter on Facebook and Twitter, or sign up for our newsletter here.


    Editorial team

    Will Godfrey – Editor-in-chief 






    Will has worked as an editor and journalist in the human rights and drugs spaces for over a decade. He was the founder and editor-in-chief of The Influence (2015-2017), an award-winning publication covering drug policy and related areas. He also founded and ran Substance.com (2014-2015), a harm reduction-oriented news site, and was previously editor-in-chief of the addiction-focused site The Fix (2013). He formerly co-founded and edited Voice of the Ville, an award-winning print publication for incarcerated people in London (2006-2010). 

    Sarah Beller – Deputy Editor 





    Sarah was an associate editor at The Influence. Prior to that, she worked as a social worker, providing counseling and advocacy services, with a specialty in harm reduction strategies. That work inspired her to begin researching and writing about drug policy, addiction and harm reduction. Her particular areas of focus have included drug courts, justice for formerly incarcerated people, addiction treatment, and psychiatric medications and mental health. She has a BA in Religious Studies from Yale University and a master’s in Social Work from Smith.

    Helen Redmond – Senior Editor






    Helen has written about nicotine, mental health and drug policy for publications including Al Jazeera, AlterNet, Harper’s and The Influence. As an LCSW, she works with drug users in medical and community mental health settings. An expert on tobacco harm reduction, she provides training and consultation on mental health, nicotine use and THR, and in 2016 organized the first Tobacco Harm Reduction Conference in the U.S. Helen is also a documentary filmmaker, and produces original video for Filter.

    Sessi Kuwabara Blanchard – Editorial Fellow






    Sessi is a writer and organizer interested in cultural criticism, transnational politics and the ways that controlled substances are traded, policed and consumed. Having recently graduated from Vassar College with a degree in Philosophy and Women’s Studies, Sessi has kick-started her writing career, with work appearing in publications like Broadlyi-DPitchfork and them., among others.



    Josiah Bates; Quinn BellElizabeth BricoTessie CastilloSamrat Chowdhery; Michael Cooper; Troy FarahSeth FerrantiRory Fleming; Kevin FranciottiDrew GibsonGiada Girelli; Marewa Glover; Diane Goldstein; Jessica HardingShilo Jama; Jess Keefe; Alison KnopfVictoria Law; Alexander Lekhtman; Leili LymanChristopher Moraff; Tony O’NeillStanton Peele; JS Rafaeli; Ivy Ann RosadoElizabeth RyanCaty SimonMaia SzalavitzSheila P. Vakharia; Jenny Valentish; April Wilson Smith; Louise VincentNiko VorobjovNeil WoodsSheila Wren Hand

    Pitching guidelines and contact details

    Please send all email correspondence to: Editor [at] filtermag.org.

    We welcome pitches for feature-length articles around our subject areas, including investigative reports, op-eds, essays and interviews. Please send proposals (rather than drafts) and a sample of your previous work. Due to volume of pitches, we regret we cannot reply to them all; we will get back to you within a week if your idea is one we can use.

    Donate to Filter

    As a nonprofit publication, Filter is funded entirely by donations and grants. If you wish to support our work of reporting on drug use, drug policy and human rights, please donate using the button below. We’re grateful for your support.