Families

DPA is committed to ending the drug war’s assault on families.  Families throughout the United States have experienced the devastating consequences of failed drug war policies.  One in 28 children in this country have a parent in prison, in large part due to the mass incarceration of people convicted of drug law violations.  Even parents who avoid criminal punishment risk losing custody of their children, regardless of whether their drug use is problematic or not.  Ineffective drug education and student drug testing have chipped away at the bonds of trust between parents and children.  We support policies that treat drug use as a health issue, not a criminal justice issue, and we believe that families should have privacy and autonomy when dealing with drugs and addiction.
 

TANF Policy Brief

CLASP

Random drug testing of TANF recipients is costly, ineffective and hurts families.

Children of the Drug War

August 1, 2011
Damon Barrett, Editor

Children of the Drug War is a collection of original essays that investigates the impacts of the war on drugs on children, young people and their families.

The full book and each of its four sections are available for free download. It may also be read online.

Report of the Global Commission on Drug Policy

June 2, 2011
Global Commission on Drug Policy

The Global Commission, whose members include Kofi Annan and four former presidents, calls the drug war a failure and advocates a paradigm shift in global drug policy. The commission's bold recommendations include encouraging governments to experiment with legalization of drugs, particularly marijuana; putting an end to drug policies being driven by ideology and politics; and directing resources away from arresting and incarcerating so many people for drug law violations.

Collateral Costs: Incarceration's Effect on Economic Mobility

September 23, 2010
jointly authored by The Economic Mobility Project and the Public Safety Performance Project of the Pew Charitable Trusts

Collateral Costs: Incarceration's Effect on Economic Mobility is a collaborative effort between the Pew Charitable Trusts' Economic Mobility Project and its Public Safety Performance Project (PSPP). The report examines the impact of incarceration on the economic opportunity and mobility of former inmates and their families.

A Mother Speaks Out

On June 13, 1971, I became a mother when my first son was born. Five days later, President Nixon declared the "war on drugs." Little did I know then that this war would be waged against families like mine for the next four decades.
 
Read Gretchen's story.

Federal Activist Toolkit

We can make a powerful impact by urging our members of Congress to end failed drug war policies. They care what their constituents have to say.
 

Tips for Talking to Congress

Legislators appreciate hearing from their constituents, and they are elected to represent our views. Always give your legislator your name, address, and telephone number so that they know you are one of their constituents. Be sure to include this information whether you visit in person, call, or write.

When you contact your legislators, a short sentence or two about why you personally support or oppose a certain proposal is fine. 

Most importantly, always be courteous and clear when communicating with your legislators. Remember, legislators are people, too!

Testing for Drugs of Abuse in Children and Adolescents: Addendum—Testing in Schools and at Home

March 1, 2007
American Academy of Pediatrics

The AAP explains its opposition to involuntary drug testing of adolescents at school or at home, and encourages parents who are concerned that their child may be using drugs or alcohol to consult their child’s pediatrician rather than rely on school or home-based drug testing.

Policy Statement: Testing for Drugs of Abuse in Children and Adolescents

September 1, 2006
American Academy of Pediatrics

This policy statement outlines the American Academy of Pediatrics’ opposition to random student drug testing and its position that the appropriate response to the suspicion of drug abuse by a young person is the referral to a qualified health care professional for a comprehensive evaluation.

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