Read all the latest LAC News, Blogs, Events and Highlights here.

SAMHSA Issues Proposed Rule on Confidentiality of Alcohol and Drug Treatment Information

The Legal Action Center welcomes the efforts of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (“SAMHSA”) of the Department of Health and Human Services to modernize federal confidentiality rules while maintaining needed privacy protections, including its release on February 9, 2016 of a proposed rule on the law protecting the confidentiality of substance use disorder records, 42 U.S.C. § 290dd-2, codified as 42 C.F.R. Part 2 (“Part 2”).

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SAMHSA Releases Proposed Changes to 42 CFR Part 2 (Alcohol/Drug Confidentiality Rules)

According to SAMHSA, the goal of the proposed changes “is to facilitate information exchange within new health care models while addressing the legitimate privacy concerns of patients seeking treatment for a substance use disorder.”

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LAC Urges NY State to Expand Alternatives to Incarceration, Health Care Access For Justice-Involved People

In recommendations presented to the New York State Assembly Ways and Means and Senate Finance Committees, the Legal Action Center urged the State to expand its commitment to Alternatives to Incarceration, increase health care access and provide other re-entry assistance to justice-involved people.

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LAC Praises the Final Recommendations of the Charles Colson Task Force on Federal Corrections

Legal Action Center commends the Charles Colson Task Force on Federal Corrections for its final recommendations that will be presented to Congress tonight. Legal Action Center has advocated for many of the specific recommendations in the Task Force’s report and calls on Congress and the Administration to implement these needed reforms. Policymakers can find additional support for the Colson Task Force’s report as well as additional recommendations for drug and alcohol policy reforms by reading Legal Action Center’s recently released report, Roadmap for Promoting Health and Justice: A Smarter, More Effective National Drug and Alcohol Policy.

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New Polling Shows Broad Support for Expanding Addiction Treatment and Report Offers Policymakers a Roadmap for a More Effective National Drug and Alcohol Policy

A survey commissioned by Legal Action Center (LAC) and released today finds strong support among Americans for expanding addiction treatment and making it a policy priority of the next president. The survey was released in conjunction with a new report from Legal Action Center; The Roadmap for Promoting Health and Justice: A Smarter, More Effective National Drug and Alcohol Policy is a guide for policymakers who understand the urgent need to reshape the nation’s drug and alcohol policies, in order to address addiction as a chronic disease that can be treated and prevented.

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NY Governor Cuomo Proposes Major Improvements to the Criminal Justice System in State of the State & Executive Budget

Legal Action Center applauds New York Governor Andrew Cuomo’s proposal of numerous reforms and new budget initiatives within the criminal justice system for the coming year in his State of the State and budget proposals.

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LAC Praises “Right Priorities” Criminal Justice Initiative Announced by NY Governor Andrew Cuomo

Legal Action Center offered high praise for New York Governor Andrew Cuomo and the “Right Priorities” initiative he announced yesterday. Governor Cuomo’s initiatives would prevent young and other at-risk people from entering the criminal justice system and provide new support in the criminal justice system to help people succeed in the community.

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NY Governor Andrew Cuomo to Conditionally Pardon 10,000 Former Youth Convicted of Adult Crimes

Legal Action Center applauds Governor Andrew Cuomo for the bold, humane, and just plan he announced today to conditionally pardon people convicted of misdemeanors or non-violent felonies when they were 16- or 17-years-old, if they have not had a subsequent conviction in ten years. “These pardons are a huge step to reverse the devastating and perpetual harms caused by criminal records,” said LAC Director and President Paul Samuels.

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The Annie E. Casey Foundation Grant to Support LAC’s National H.I.R.E. Network

The Legal Action Center’s National Helping Individuals Reenter through Employment Network (National H.I.R.E. Network) has received a $40,000 grant from The Annie E. Casey Foundation to make it easier for people with criminal records to live with their families in safe and stable housing.

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NY Federal Court Grants Preliminary Approval of FCRA Class Action Settlement

On December 11, 2015, a New York federal court preliminarily approved the settlement in Legal Action Center’s class action lawsuit, Jones v. Halstead Management Co. et al., No. 1:14-cv-03125-VEC. The suit charged Halstead with criminal background screening practices that cost Mr. Jones a job as a doorman and violated the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA). Plaintiff Kevin A. Jones, who had no criminal record, lost a job with Halstead because a commercial background check conducted by Sterling Infosystems, Inc. mixed him up with a Kevin M. Jones, who had several convictions. Legal Action Center filed the suit in the Southern District of New York with co-counsel, Francis & Mailman, P.C.

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