Travis County District Attorney candidates talk about the war on drugs

February 10, 2020

AUSTIN, Texas — Grassroots LeadershipTexas Criminal Justice Coalition and Texas Harm Reduction Alliance held a forum Sunday to educate the community on candidates running for Travis County District Attorney and present questions to them. 

The forum specifically addressed the role prosecutors play in promoting public health approaches to drug use, harm reduction and pre-arrest diversion programs. 

District Attorney Margaret Moore, Workers Defense co-director Jose Garza and attorney Erin Martinson were all in attendance.

Recently, these groups along with the Civil Rights Clinic at the University of Texas School of Law analyzed low-level drug arrests in 2017 and 2018. Their data showed even though African Americans make up 8.9% of the county's population, they account for 29.4% of drug possession arrests. During the forum, they asked the candidates how they would change that.