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May 12, 2006
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Prop 36 Grads Give Back

San Diegans who benefited from drug treatment under the law call for legislators’ continued support of the program


Contact: Margaret Dooley (858) 336-3685 or Gretchen Burns Bergman (619) 670-1184

SAN DIEGO - Graduates of Proposition 36, California’s treatment-instead-of-incarceration law, met with legislators in the greater San Diego area today to ask for their continued support of the program. Funding for Prop 36 drug treatment will expire on June 30, 2006, unless it is reallocated in the state budget due out in summer.

Today the grads shared their success stories with staff in eight San Diego legislators’ offices, including Senators Christine Kehoe and Dennis Hollingsworth. Prop 36 graduates also shared their criminal justice and recovery experiences at several assembly members’ offices, including George Plescia, Mark Wyland, Shirley Horton, Juan Vargas, Lori Saldaña and Ray Haynes.

Participants in today’s Prop 36 San Diego Advocacy Day are all in recovery rather than jail thanks to Prop 36. They represent some of the over 140,000 Californians that have entered treatment through the program in just four years—and some of the 60,000 that will have graduated by July 1, 2006. Also by that date, the program will have saved taxpayers between $800 million and $1.3 billion.

Prop 36 graduates that participated in today’s Prop 36 Advocacy Day are concerned that other Californians won’t get the opportunities they did if funding for Prop 36 drug treatment is allowed to end on June 30, 2006. They warned San Diego legislators today that unless Prop 36 drug treatment is sufficiently funded, people who are suffering from addiction might not receive adequate care in the program, which would greatly jeopardize their chances at successful recovery.

A New PATH and the Drug Policy Alliance, sponsors of the event, helped lead the campaign to pass Prop 36 in 2000 and continue to work to protect the program.

More information:

A recent report by the University of California at Los Angeles showed that Prop 36 actually saved the state money—an average of $2.50 for every $1 invested. For program completers, like those who met with their legislators today, the savings was even higher, at $4 for every $1 invested.

A recent Justice Policy Institute study showed that, in the five years since Prop 36 was approved, California prisons saw a 32 percent drop in the number of people incarcerated for drug possession and the violent crime rate in California dropped at a faster rate than other states.

Proposition 36 Fact Sheet

See more press releases

Common Sense for Drug Policy
California Society of Addiction Medicine
California State Association of Counties

Read commentary from Oliver H., a Prop 36 graduate.

Get the Facts
Over a dozen Proposition 36 fact sheets are available for download. Topics include: the Effectiveness of Drug Treatment, Drug Courts/Deferred Entry, and the California Correctional System.
breakdowns of the 2000 initiative votes
For background on the Prop. 36 campaign and other votes nationwide for drug policy reform, see:

Contact Lists
County Lead Agencies
and Contacts
Parole Region Contact
Probation Contacts



Drug Policy Alliance · (916) 444-3751 · [email protected]