WHEREAS, a provision of the Higher Education Act of 1998 delays or denies federal financial aid eligibility to any individual convicted of a state or federal drug offense; and
WHEREAS, African-American make up 12% of the population and 13% of drug offenders, but represent 55% of drug convictions and represent more than 70% of incarcerations; and
WHEREAS, the provision further imposes low-income class disparity, places obstacles on offenders seeking rehabilitation and invokes an extra-judicial penalty imposed in addition to existing criminal justice penalties.
THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the NAACP National Board of Directors support HR1053, a bill to repeal the HEA drug provision, in keeping with our commitment to education as a deterrent to possible repeat incarcerations; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the NAACP remains vehemently opposed to the use and/or sale of illegal substances and supports drug treatment and education as viable weapons in the continued war against drugs.