ACLU Hosts Panel on The Opioid Epidemic in the Criminal Justice System

November 18, 2020

On November 18, 2020, ACLU joined the Columbia Health Law Association, the Criminal Justice Action Network, and the Prison Healthcare Initiative to host a panel discussion about the intersection of the opioid epidemic and American jails and prisons. Two panelists discussed the difficulties that many incarcerated people face in seeking access to medication assisted treatment and will elaborate on what the criminal justice system should do to ensure that incarcerated individuals have access to appropriate healthcare. 

We were joined by two panelists:

  • Mary Sylla, JD, MPH is a Senior Staff Attorney with the Drug Policy Alliance. She has worked on criminal justice and public health issues for over 20 years and was instrumental in early advocacy for condom access for prisoners and other initiatives to improve HIV medical care and prevention for people who are incarcerated.
  • Joseph Longley is an Equal Justice Works fellow at the ACLU National Prison Project. There, he focuses on combating the opioid epidemic by expanding access to medications for opioid use disorder for incarcerated people.