City of Louisville launches new program aimed to combat drug epidemic
LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - A new program launching in Louisville will try to steer those in trouble with drugs away from jail and onto a better path.
It's called the LEAD program, standing for Law Enforcement Assisted Diversion.
The community-based effort steers people suspected of committing non-violent, low-level drug-related offenses away from the criminal justice system and into treatment.
Modeled after a Seattle case management program, participants were 58 percent less likely to be arrested after being enrolled in LEAD.
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"In many cases these people mean no harm." Mayor Greg Fischer said. "They're struggling with disease. I'm proud of the way our city can talk about that as a brain disease issue. Throwing them into jails and courts that are already overcrowded and backlogged doesn't serve their needs or the city's needs."
A federal Justice Department grant will help fund the project.
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