Attorney General Eric Holder is making some big changes in the Justice Department. According to the Associated Press, Holder intends to alter how nonviolent drug offenders are currently prosecuted in the courts – specifically, he says that any persons who are not connected to a gang or drug organization and are charged with low-level drug offenses that are not violent in nature will not be subjected to the mandatory minimum sentences that others may face.

The new policy is designed to help those who have never been convicted of a drug charge to avoid long prison sentences and to make sure that the longest prison terms are only had by those who are high-level, repeat or violent drug traffickers – not those who struggle only with addiction.

Said Holder at a forum of the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation on criminal justice issues: “Some federal drug statutes that mandate inflexible sentences — regardless of the individual conduct at issue in a particular case — do not serve public safety when they’re applied indiscriminately.”

Time for a Change

Holder is responding to what has become a growing concern in the United States over the past few decades: the overcrowding of the prison system. The population housed in federal prisons across the country has grown by 800 percent since 1980, yet the US population has grown by only 33 percent.

About five percent of the world’s population lives in the United States, but 25 percent of the world’s prison population is incarcerated here, says the Justice Department. Of the more than 219,000 federal prisoners, about 50 percent are incarcerated due to drug-related charges. Certainly, it’s time for a change.

Helping Your Loved One Escape the Sentence of Addiction

Though this may help some addicts and alcoholics avoid unwarranted and unhelpful prison sentences and maintain their freedom, it doesn’t specifically address their need for addiction treatment. In order to continue to avoid long-term prison sentences, it’s important for those struggling with substance abuse to get the intensive treatment they need to ensure that they never end up in front of a judge for such charges again.

The first step is a phone call. Contact us at Black Bear Lodge today and connect with our evidence-based rehabilitation program designed to meet the needs of each patient. We offer a unique combination of medical and therapeutic treatments designed to help your loved one tackle the challenges specific to their experience. Call now.

Articles posted here are primarily educational and may not directly reflect the offerings at Black Bear Lodge. For more specific information on programs at Black Bear Lodge, contact us today.