From the good folks at Students for a Sensible Drug Policy (SSDP)
As you know, since its inception, SSDP has campaigned against a 1998
amendment to the Higher Education Act that denies federal financial aid to
anyone convicted of a drug-related offense, no matter how minor. This
provision is counter-productive and causes enormous harm, particularly to
minority students and middle-class and lower-income students who can’t
afford the high cost of college. Department of Education data indicates
that more than 128,000 students have been adversely affected by the
H.R. 685, a bill in Congress that would repeal the provision has the
support of sixty-five Representatives, and now nine Presidential
candidates have spoken out against the provision. A national coalition
has formed to fight for repeal of the provision. Allies include the
United States Student Association and the American Council on Education.
Pressure from our broad-based coalition has already started to trouble
Rep. Mark Souder, the provision’s author. Recently, Rep. Souder
introduced a proposal that he sees as a “fix” to the problems associated
with the provision. While we applaud any efforts to reduce the suffering
caused by this bad law, we know that the only true solution is its full
We need you to send this message loud and clear to Congress!
Right now – with reauthorization of the Higher Education Act on the
horizon – is the best opportunity to repeal the drug provision.
ACTIONS TO TAKE:
- FAX YOUR U.S. REPRESENTATIVE AND SENATORS RIGHT NOW and urge them to
support all opportunities to repeal the 1998 Higher Education Act
amendment that delays or denies federal financial aid to anyone convicted
of a drug related offense. Do it free here.Follow-up your fax with phone calls to their offices this THURSDAY,
FEBRUARY 12, 2004.
We’ve been fighting this one for years and it needs to go away! I’m proud to say that the Illinois State University was one of the early ones to pass a resolution condemning this provision.