This is an August 2007 copy of a website maintained by the Center for International Policy. It is posted here for historical purposes. The Center for International Policy no longer maintains this resource.

Home
|
Analyses
|
Aid
|
|
|
News
|
|
|
|
Last Updated:3/31/00
Speech by Rep. Robert Scott (D-Virginia), March 29, 2000
Mr. SCOTT. Mr. Chairman, I move to strike the requisite number of words.

Mr. Chairman, if our goal is to reduce drug abuse, the $1.7 billion could be used better on juvenile crime prevention and early intervention programs and drug rehabilitation under the Pelosi amendment than spending that money in Colombia under the bill.

Now, we know how to reduce drug abuse. The drug programs are not perfect, but they are effective. A study of the rehabilitation program in California has shown it to be so effective that it reduced costs in health care, welfare, and crime so much that the State saves $7 for every dollar it puts into the drug abuse program.

Drug courts have been studied. They send prisoners to drug rehabilitation rather than simply to jail. That program is shown to reduce recidivism more than just sending them to jail and is a little cheaper.


[TIME: 1745]

So we know that drug rehabilitation works, and it is cost-effective. We also know that spending $1.7 billion in Colombia will not make a measurable difference on the amount of drugs consumed in the United States.

Late last year, Mr. Chairman, the Speaker of the House and the minority leader, Mr. Gephardt, appointed a bipartisan Juvenile Justice Task Force to figure out what we can do to reduce juvenile crime. We invited experts across the country to help us in this process.

And all the testimony that we heard pointed to prevention and early intervention as the appropriate strategies to deal with juvenile crime. We did not hear anyone suggest that spending billions of dollars on interdiction would be an effective strategy for dealing with juvenile crime. We heard about early childhood programs and improved education and afterschool programs.

If we look at $1.7 billion, we could build four $1 million boys and girls clubs in every congressional district in this country for that same amount of money, and that is $1.7 billion. A lot of it we could spend over and over again so we can build more and more boys and girls clubs with that same appropriation.

We have heard stories of the tragedies involving drug use, and we have a choice in this amendment. We can do what works, what is cost-effective, the drug rehabilitation and the prevention and early intervention programs, or we can spend a lot more on a program which, at best, will have a negligible effect on the amount of crime, on the crime and drugs in the United States.

I hope, Mr. Chairman, that we will have the courage to vote for the choice which will actually reduce crime and drug abuse by adopting the Pelosi amendment.

As of March 30, 2000, this document was also available online at http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/query/z?r106:H29MR0-173:

Google
Search WWW Search ciponline.org

Asia
|
Colombia
|
|
Financial Flows
|
National Security
|

Center for International Policy
1717 Massachusetts Avenue NW
Suite 801
Washington, DC 20036
(202) 232-3317 / fax (202) 232-3440
cip@ciponline.org