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Legal Action Center Advocacy Toolkit: Limiting Suspension/Revocation of Drivers Licenses to Driving-Related Convictions

  • Organization: Legal Action Center
  • Date Created: Tuesday, January 31, 2006
  • Submitted: Tuesday, January 31, 2006
  • Attachment(s): LINK

The Unfair Roadblock: While states have a legitimate interest in keeping individuals who are unfit to drive off the roads, many states have passed laws suspending or revoking the drivers' licenses of people convicted of drug offenses, even when these offenses are unrelated to their ability to drive. Many states also provide no opportunity for these drivers to obtain restrictive licenses so that they can get to work, school or treatment. Taking away drivers' licenses for an offense that is not related to the ability to drive and providing no opportunity to obtain restricted drivers' licenses is harmful to the individuals, their family and communities by making it impossible for many of them to earn a living, go to school or receive health care, including drug or alcohol treatment.

How to Remove the Roadblock: States should limit revocation or suspension of drivers' licenses to driving-related drug offenses, such as driving under the influence of a controlled substance. States also should offer restricted licenses when appropriate so individuals whose licenses were suspended or revoked can work, go to school, and obtain health care.

This tool kit provides materials advocates can use to seek reform of these laws.

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