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It’s time to kick our addiction to the war on drugs

April 25, 2017
Author: 
MARC KRUPANSKI

STAT Magazine - "Law enforcement can play an important role in harm reduction. In fact, police can respond more effectively when they put health first. In Seattle, the Law Enforcement Assisted Diversion (LEAD) program lets police officers divert users and low-level dealers to harm reduction services instead of sending them to court and jail. That approach is catching on in cities across the country, including Santa Fe, N.M.; Albany, N.Y.; Baltimore; and Atlanta. University of Washington researchers found that LEAD in Seattle decreased recidivism by nearly 60 percent, and saved millions of dollars. LEAD participants were also significantly more likely to obtain housing, employment, and legitimate income."