Hearing to Ban Suspicionless Student Drug Testing in CA. Set for Assembly Education Committee

Press Release June 21, 2004
Media Contact

Simeon Gant at (916) 202-1636

SACRAMENTO –The Drug Policy Alliance will host a press conference featuring representatives from the state PTA, NAACP, and ACLU supporting a measure to thwart suspicionless (random) student drug testing in California schools. Supporters of SB 1386 assert that random drug testing of students is ineffective and too expensive for cash-strapped schools.

The bill, authored by State Senator John Vasconcellos (D-San Jose) and Education Committee Chair Jackie Goldberg (D- Los Angeles) recently passed the Senate with support from both the Democratic majority and some of the state’s most conservative senators, including Tom McClintock (R-Thousand Oaks) and Dr. Samuel Aanestad (R-Grass Valley).

“I cannot think of anything more repulsive to the conservative philosophy of the Republican Party,” Senator Aanestad said of random student drug testing.

Apparently alarmed by the bipartisan support for state legislation to ban random, suspicionless drug testing of students, the Bush administration will send Deputy Drug Czar Andrea Grubb Barthwell to testify against SB 1386 in the Assembly Education Committee on Wednesday.

“Random drug testing fails to deter drug use among students according to other state’s experience,” Senator Vasconcellos said today. “It deters youth from participating in extracurricular activities and alienates them. It also leads to expensive litigation that costs taxpayers. Our resources are better spent on drug education and positive reinforcement.”

A young woman holds a sign that says "End the Drug War."

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