Good news, bad news: New York’s drug law reform and collateral consequences

index,newyorjThe Vera Institute has issued a first-rate assessment of the effect of the Rockefeller drug law reforms in New York City.  See End of an Era?  The Impact of Drug Law Reform in New York City.   The report found that as a result of the reforms far more people were diverted out of the justice system and into treatment, thus avoiding conviction and the attendant collateral consequences.  On the other hand, for those not diverted, the report found that the repeal of mandatory minimums led prosecutors to look for other ways to leverage plea bargains, leading to more felony convictions and more severe collateral consequences than under the old laws.  Sentencing reformers in other jurisdictions should take note.

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