Civil Rights

Data, statistics and information regarding civil and human rights, particularly in the context of drug control policies and the criminal justice system

Racial & Ethnic Bias In Police Use of Force During Traffic Stops

Racial & Ethnic Bias In Police Use of Force During Traffic Stops: "In 2011, 6% of drivers pulled over in traffic stops experienced some type of force used against them, from shouting and cursing, to verbal threats of force or other action, to physical force, including hitting, handcuffing, and pointing a gun (table 9). Of the 1% of stopped drivers who experienced physical force during the traffic stop, more than half (55%) believed the police behaved properly during the contact.

Political Interference Blocks Research Into Racially Biased Law Enforcement Practices

Political Interference Blocks Research Into Racially Biased Law Enforcement Practices: New York Times, 2005: "The Bush administration is replacing the director of a small but critical branch of the Justice Department, months after he complained that senior political officials at the department were seeking to play down newly compiled data on the aggressive police treatment of black and Hispanic drivers.

Collateral Consequences of a Criminal Conviction

Collateral Consequences of a Criminal Conviction: "Collateral consequences are those legal, non-criminal penalties that attach to a conviction, but that were not part of the punishment at sentencing. These penalties have been called the 'invisible punishment'4 because they are civil penalties that do not fall within the jurisdiction of the criminal justice system. Collateral consequences can make an individual with a criminal history ineligible for various types of employment and occupational licenses, rendering a job search nearly futile."

Similarities Between War on Terror and War on Drugs

Similarities Between War on Terror and War on Drugs: "Like the war on terror, the war on drugs is framed as a response to an exceptional, existential threat to our health, our security, and indeed the very fabric of society. The 'Addiction to narcotic drugs' is portrayed as an 'evil' the international community has a moral duty to 'combat' because it is a 'danger of incalculable gravity' that warrants a series of (otherwise publicly unacceptable) extraordinary measures. This is not an exaggeration of the political rhetoric.

Constitutional View On Prosecuting Pregnant Women

"Another constitutional argument [against prosecuting pregnant women] is based on the right to privacy: the prosecution of a pregnant drug-addicted woman infringes upon a woman’s right to privacy, as established in Roe v. Wade.111 In Roe, the Supreme Court held that the right to privacy, 'whether it be founded in the Fourteenth Amendment’s concept of personal liberty and restrictions upon state action ... or ...

Drug War and Human Rights

Drug War and Human Rights: "Certain fundamental principles underpin all aspects of national and international policy. These are enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and many international treaties that have followed. Of particular relevance to drug policy are the rights to life, to health, to due process and a fair trial, to be free from torture or cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment, from slavery, and from discrimination. These rights are inalienable, and commitment to them takes precedence over other international agreements, including the drug control conventions.


Narcoterror: "A narco-terrorist organization is an organized group that is complicit in the activities of drug trafficking to further or fund premeditated, politically motivated violence to influence a government or group of people. Although the DEA does not specifically target terrorists, some of the powerful international drug trafficking organizations we have targeted have never hesitated to use violence and terror to advance their political interests."

DEA and Confidential Informants

DEA and Confidential Informants: "DEA officials state that without confidential sources, the DEA could not effectively enforce the controlled substances laws of the United States. Confidential sources come from all walks of life and are significant to initiating investigations and providing information or services to facilitate arrests and seizures of drugs and cash. According to the DEA, it has approximately 4,000 active confidential sources at any one time."