NEW YORK – The Committee on the Justice System will hold an oversight hearing to examine how the City’s District Attorneys are addressing the opioid crisis. The hearing will take place on Thursday, June 21 at 1:00pm.
The Committee hearing follows a recent New York Times report that outlined how District Attorneys around the country are increasingly treating opioid overdose deaths as homicides and, in turn, are prosecuting individuals who are not actually dealers, many of whom are addicts themselves. The Committee will be seeking insight into how opioid-related cases are prosecuted in each of the five boroughs by the City’s District Attorneys and the Special Narcotics Prosecutor, including the use of alternatives to incarceration and diversion programs.
“The opioid epidemic is a public health crisis that has torn apart families and communities all across New York City,” said Council Member Lancman, chair of the Committee on the Justice System. “Prosecutors have a vital role to play in combating this crisis and ensuring that individuals who are struggling with opioid addiction receive the help and treatment that they need. I look forward to hearing from our City’s District Attorneys and the Special Narcotics Prosecutor about the prosecutorial strategies they are choosing to pursue and the programs they have put into place.”