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Ghost Towns: Ciudad Juarez Residents Flee New Homes to Escape Drug Prohibition War Violence

Location: 
Ciudad Juárez, CHH
Mexico
Across the border from El Paso, Texas, a mass exodus triggered by a murderous prohibitionist war for drug trafficking routes into the United States has left huge swaths of Ciudad Juarez uninhabited, rocking Mexican home builders and gutting the large industrial city of its upwardly mobile working class. Residents are fleeing many towns along the Mexican border, but the migration is perhaps most acutely felt in Juarez, which until recently was among Mexico's fastest-growing cities, its industrial jobs attracting immigrants from across the country and Central America.
Publication/Source: 
AOL News (US)
URL: 
http://www.dailyfinance.com/story/ghost-towns-ciudad-juarez-residents-flee-new-homes-to-escape-dr/19733204/

Barriers to Ex-Offender Employment Could Cost the Nation at Least $57 Billion

According to a study from the Center for Economic and Policy Research's senior economist John Schmitt, ex-offenders' barriers to employment lowers the nation's employment on average by 1.5 million to 1.7 million workers. Multiply that number by the average output that these workers would be putting into the economy, if they were employed, and the loss totals at least $57 billion, he said. This figure is growing as more of the hundreds of thousands of people put into jail during the prohibitionist war on drugs in the 1980s and 1990s are released.
Publication/Source: 
Los Angeles Times (CA)
URL: 
http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/money_co/2010/11/ex-offender-and-employment.html

Hundreds of Mexicans Seek Shelter Near Border from Drug Prohibition War

Location: 
Roma
Mexico
Eleven blocks from the Texas border, hundreds of destitute Mexicans are gathered in a shelter, escaping what they fear is certain death.
Publication/Source: 
The Texas Tribune (TX)
URL: 
http://www.texastribune.org/texas-mexico-border-news/texas-mexico-border/hundreds-of-mexicans-seek-shelter-near-border/

Growth of Ex-Offender Population in United States Is a Dramatic Drag on Economy (Press Release)

For Immediate Release:November 15, 2010
Contact: Alan Barber, (571) 306-2526

Washington, D.C.- Three decades of harsh criminal justice policies have created a large population of ex-offenders that struggle in the labor market long after they have paid their debts to society, according to a new report from the Center for Economic and Policy Research (CEPR). Because prison records and felony convictions greatly lower ex-offenders' chances of finding work, the United States loses between $57 billion and $65 billion a year in lost output.

“It isn't just that we have the highest incarceration rate in the world, we have created a situation over the last 30 years where about one in eight men is an ex-offender,” said John Schmitt, a Senior Economist at CEPR and a co-author of the report.

The new report, “Ex-offenders and the Labor Market,” found that in 2008 there were between 5.4 million and 6.1 million ex-prisoners and between 12.3 million and 13.9 million ex-felons in the United States. Over 90 percent were men.

In 2008, about one in 33 working-age adults was an ex-prisoner, and about one in 15 working-age adults was an ex-felon. Among working-age men in that same year, about one in 17 was an ex-prisoner and one in eight was an ex-felon.

Because ex-offenders face substantial barriers to employment, the authors estimate that the large ex-offender population in 2008 lowered employment that year by the equivalent of 1.5 million to 1.7 million workers.

"The rise in the ex-offender population overwhelmingly reflects changes in the U.S. criminal Justice system, not changes in underlying criminal activity," says Schmitt. "We incarcerate an astonishing share of non-violent offenders, particularly for drug-related offenses. We have far better ways to handle these kinds of offenses, but so far common sense has not prevailed."

The report warns that in the absence of reforms to the criminal justice system, the share of ex-offenders in the working-age population will rise substantially in coming years, increasing the magnitude of employment and output losses estimated for 2008.

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Collateral Damage Grows in Mexico’s Army-Led Prohibitionist Drug War

Location: 
Mexico
It was in February 2007 that Amnesty International raised concerns over Mexican President Felipe Calderon’s decision, two months earlier, to send thousands of troops across the country to attempt to control Mexico’s spiraling drug prohibition violence. Echoing worries voiced by the United Nations, the rights group warned that sending the army onto Mexican streets to do the job of the police was a bad idea. Almost four years into the fight, it would seem Amnesty, the U.N. and a host of other rights groups were right.
Publication/Source: 
Reuters
URL: 
http://blogs.reuters.com/global/2010/11/03/drugwarcollateral/

Eating Poppy Seed Bagel Leads to Drug-Related Baby Seizure

Location: 
PA
United States
The American Civil Liberties Union is representing a western Pennsylvania woman who says her newborn baby was seized by county welfare workers after she failed a drug test because she ate a poppy seed bagel.
Publication/Source: 
The Associated Press
URL: 
http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5hnmXylMUhxzpYh7j6z-yfLVF7GSQD9IRGCT00?docId=D9IRGCT00

Mothers Lead the Charge Against the Nation's War on Drugs

Location: 
Sacramento, CA
United States
Mothers from across California rallied at the state capitol Wedneday to launch a national movement to end the nation's war on drugs. The group wants alternatives to jail time for drug offenses, such as addiction treatment. "While it may seem counter-intuitive that a group of mothers would say such a thing, it's because we love our children and we really feel the war on drugs is more harmful than the drugs themselves," Gretchen Burns Bergman, mother and rally leader said.
Publication/Source: 
KGET (CA)
URL: 
http://www.kget.com/news/local/story/Mothers-lead-the-charge-against-the-nations-war/Wc-7YovDr0K28HXAqFrLug.cspx

Marijuana, Once Divisive, Brings Some Families Closer

To the rites of middle-age passage, some families are adding another: buying marijuana for aging parents.
Publication/Source: 
The New York Times (NY)
URL: 
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/10/10/us/10pot.html

Mexico’s Growing Legion of Drug Prohibition Orphans

Location: 
Mexico
Largely overlooked is the story of the estimated tens of thousands of children whose lives are blighted by drug prohibition violence. Neither Mexico's government nor the various independent groups studying organized crime keep track of the number of orphans who have lost fathers, and sometimes mothers too, to the drug prohibition war.
Publication/Source: 
Reuters
URL: 
http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE6952YW20101006

Why Parents Should Support Legalizing Pot (Opinion)

Location: 
CA
United States
Hanna Liebman Dershowitz, an attorney and mother of two elementary school children, opines on why parents should support legalizing marijuana.
Publication/Source: 
Alternet (CA)
URL: 
http://www.alternet.org/drugs/148278/why_parents_should_support_legalizing_pot

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