Thursday Webinar: Connecting the War on Drugs to the War on Immigrants

Press Release May 9, 2016
Media Contact

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<p>Armando Gudino: 562-413-9003<br />
Tony Newman: 646-335-5384</p>

The Drug Policy Alliance, Immigrant Legal Resource Center, and Human Rights Watch invite you to join a free webinar on Thursday, May 12, 2016 at 11 am Pacific / 12 pm Mountain / 1 pm Central / 2 pm Eastern.

The drug war has increasingly become a war against immigrant communities.  Much as the drug war drives mass incarceration, it is also a major driver of mass deportation.  Over a quarter of a million people have been deported from the U.S. after convictions for drug offenses since 2007.

Unfortunately, while drug diversion programs are designed to help drug offenders avoid a criminal conviction and the damaging collateral consequences that can follow, many existing programs often fail both immigrants and citizens. For immigrants, even successful participation in a drug diversion program can result in deportation.  And both citizens and non-citizens are often better served by programs that avoid the criminal justice system altogether, like the nationally recognized LEAD (Law Enforcement Assisted Diversion) program being piloted in cities across the US that diverts individuals charged with certain offenses to treatment before booking.

In 2015, the Drug Policy Alliance, Human Rights Watch, ILRC and many other criminal justice and immigrants’ rights groups joined forces to amend a California drug diversion program so immigrants could avoid federal consequences, including a deportable conviction. Although Governor Brown ultimately signed only one of two bills that passed the legislature, the bill nevertheless represents a major shift in state drug reform.

In this webinar, we will discuss the following:

The panelists:

Please note, CLE credits are not available for this webinar.

Please register for Connecting the War on Drugs to the War on Immigrants on Thursday, May 12, at 11 am PST / 12 pm MST / 1 pm CST / 2 pm EST by going to this registration page:

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.

For questions, please contact Human Rights Watch, US Program associate Maya Goldman at [email protected].

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

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