The Drug Policy Alliance is planning a 2-part virtual zoom series in February 2022 entitled “Declining to prosecute: The role of prosecutors in drug decriminalization and promoting public health” in partnership with the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Fair and Just Prosecution, and the Institute for Innovation in Prosecution at John Jay College. We invite you and your networks to join us to learn about this impactful way to move towards decriminalization in various jurisdictions.


We hope that the series will:

  • Inspire current prosecutors to consider a variety of drug decriminalization measures in their control, including non-prosecution;
  • Help prosecutors who already do not prosecute drug offenses to think of ways they can do even more within their role;
  • Explain the various considerations and factors in non-prosecution of drug offenses for prosecutors; and
  • Provide the research on the public safety benefits and cost savings of drug non-prosecution.


The first panel of the series, entitled “The evidence: Why some prosecutors are declining to prosecute and what the research shows” will be held on Wednesday February 9th from 3:00-4:30 pm EST. The panel will feature State’s Attorney for Baltimore, Marilyn Mosby, Miriam Krinsky (Fair and Just Prosecution), Dr. Susan Sherman (Johns Hopkins University), and Dr. Anna Harvey (New York University). They will discuss why declining to prosecute drug offenses is a necessary step forward towards a public health approach to drug use and the research evidence that supports this practice. Register:


The second panel of the series, entitled “Declining to prosecute: A discussion with Policy Directors on how to get started” which will be held on Wednesday February 16th from 3:00-4:30 pm EST. The panel will feature District Attorney for Dekalb County Georgia, Sherry Boston, and the following Policy Directors from Prosecutor’s Offices in various jurisdictions: Michael Collins (Baltimore), Jill Harris (Kings County) and Mike Lee (Philadelphia). They will discuss the nuts and bolts of non-prosecution of drug offenses and various considerations, challenges, and opportunities with this approach. Register:


All are welcome to join this event, including prosecutors, policy makers, criminal justice reform and harm reduction advocates, academics, researchers, students, media, and other interested stakeholders. There will be time for audience questions at the end of each panel.


Please reach out to Sheila Vakharia,, if you have any questions.