The Coastal Post - October, 1997

Orphans Of The War On Drugs

"The drug warriors are constantly telling us that the War on Drugs is being waged to save the youth of America, but the shocking truth is that over one million kids have been orphaned by this phoney war," said gubernatorial candidate Steve Kubby.

"According to the November Organization, between one and two million children have been displaced from their homes and have seen at least one parent go to prison. Prohibition has made children the real victims of the War on Drugs. Their chance of leading a well-adjusted and

successful life are greatly diminished when their bread-winning parent is incarcerated.

"The hidden costs of breaking up families is devastating to all Californians. Because of drug policies that target minorities, most of these children already belong to one of society's most deprived

groups. Allowing criminals to control and regulate the sale of drugs has made these drugs available to our kids 24 hours a day.

"Every time a parent is incarcerated for drug crimes, another family is ripped apart and almost always thrown into poverty. Seventy percent of all convicted, nonviolent prisoners of the drug war were employed at the time of their arrest. They go from being tax-paying, law-abiding citizens, to wards of the state prison system, and in most cases, their children go from middle class to instant poverty.

"The number of drug war orphans is a closely guarded secret. California politicians crow about the number of new prisons they have built (20 in the last 12 years) and the number of non-violent drug users that have been arrested, but the number of kids thrown into the street, and onto the social welfare roles, is a figure they prefer to ignore.

"Conservative estimates place the number of War on Drugs orphans in California at around 120,000. The children of the incarcerated have enough problems, but what about those kids whose parent has been released? These children have many problems related to their parent's inability to find suitable employment after release.

Kubby believes that these drug-war orphans are being ignored, because of the social stigma of drug use. "These innocent kids can still be saved, if nonviolent prisoners of the War on Drugs are released and reunited with their families. I urge all Californians who care about justice for children to contact our campaign, and help give these kids the family life they deserve."

Arthur R Sobey

Communications Director

Kubby for Governor Campaign

[email protected]

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