YES on Proposition 5

    WHAT IT WOULD DO: Allocate $460,000 annually to the improvement and further development of criminal treatment programs for those convicted of drug and parole-related offenses. The measure would lessen the severity of punishments for those convicted of minor drug and parole violation offenses, while creating new drug education programs for offending minors deemed at risk for future drug-related crimes.


    Proposition 5, the Nonviolent Offender Rehabilitation Act, is a much-needed step toward reforming California’s overcrowded prison system. With resources at the state’s 33 prisons stretched thin and inmates stacked wall to wall, it makes no sense to continue incarcerating nonviolent offenders who would benefit more from rehabilitation and drug education than from simply being locked up.


    Additionally, the measure’s provision for the creation of drug treatment programs for at-risk minors is exactly the type of progressive action that will provide tangible, long-lasting solutions to the drug problems that affect our youth, rather than attempting to merely obscure these pressing issues with fines and imprisonment.

    The benefits of pursuing the expansion of treatment over incarceration when dealing with drug offenses have been proven. When Proposition 36 passed in 2000, it provided California courts with the option of placing drug offenders on probation while requiring them to participate in rehabilitation programs. Since then, the treatment programs associated with Proposition 36 have turned out over 84,000 reformed offenders, individuals who were given the opportunity reassert themselves as law-abiding, tax-paying citizens.

    Excessive incarceration practices have left our state’s prisons in a predicament that only threatens to grow worse unless an acceptable alternative is agreed upon. Proposition 5 is a pragmatic and forward-thinking approach to both solving California’s prison-crowding dilemma and to addressing the issue of substance abuse among minors and adults.

    Vote to create a new set of standards by which to determine the sentencing of nonviolent offenders, standards that will allow the state to assist these individuals on the path to recovery. Vote yes on Proposition 5.

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