Pubdate: Mon, 23 Apr 2007
Source: News & Observer (Raleigh, NC)
Copyright: 2007 The News and Observer Publishing Company
Author: Matthew Potter
Bookmark: (Youth)
Bookmark: (Students for Sensible Drug Policy)


In her April 19 People's Forum letter about the law that strips 
financial aid from college students with drug convictions, U.S. Rep. 
Virginia Foxx correctly noted that completion of an eligible 
rehabilitation program enables students to re-establish eligibility.

Unfortunately, rehab programs are expensive, and students who can't 
afford college will likely have difficulty paying for treatment. 
While researching this issue I called several eligible programs and 
got zero responses over the course of two weeks. Forcing students to 
jump through expensive hoops does not solve our nation's drug 
problems; it only makes them worse.

Students already need to make good academic progress to receive aid, 
so the penalty punishes only those who are doing well in classes.

Foxx wrote that repealing the penalty would be condoning drug use. 
Actually, illegal drugs are still going to be illegal. All students 
affected by the penalty have already been tried and convicted and 
have paid their debt to society. Repealing the aid ban would send the 
message that students who make mistakes and pay the penalty deserve a 
second chance, not another roadblock on the path to education and recovery.

Matthew Potter

President, NCSU Students for Sensible Drug Policy

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