Anti-Drug Abuse Act of 1988
The Anti-Drug Abuse Act of 1988 (Pub.L. 100–690, 102 Stat. 4181, enacted November 18, 1988, H.R. 5210) is a major law of the so-called "War on Drugs" passed by the U.S. Congress which did two significant things:
- Created the policy goal of a drug-free America; and
- Established the Office of National Drug Control Policy
|Other short titles||
|Long title||An Act to prevent the manufacturing, distribution, and use of illegal drugs, and for other purposes.|
|Acronyms (colloquial)||ADAA, ADTSA|
|Nicknames||Alcohol and Drug Traffic Safety Act of 1988|
|Enacted by||the 100th United States Congress|
|Effective||November 18, 1988|
|Statutes at Large||102 Stat. 4181|
|Acts amended||Anti-Drug Abuse Act of 1986
Administrative Procedure Act
Freedom of Information Act
|Titles amended||5 U.S.C.: Government Organization and Employees
21 U.S.C.: Food and Drugs
|U.S.C. sections created||21 U.S.C. ch. 20, subch. I § 1501 et seq.|
|U.S.C. sections amended|
The change from the Act of 1986 to the Act of 1988 concerns the mandatory minimum penalties to drug trafficking conspiracies and attempts that previously were applicable only to substantive completed drug trafficking offenses. The Act amended 21 U.S.C. 844 to make crack cocaine the only drug with a mandatory minimum penalty for a first offense of simple possession. The Act made possession of more than five grams of a mixture or substance containing cocaine base punishable by at least five years in prison. The five year minimum penalty also applies to possession of more than three grams of cocaine base if the defendant has a prior conviction for crack cocaine possession, and to possession of more than one gram of crack if the defendant has two or more prior crack possession convictions.
The Anti-Drug Abuse Act of 1988 also offers several other amendments to the Act of 1986. First, the organization and coordination of Federal drug control efforts. Next, the reduction of drug demand through increased treatment and prevention efforts. Also, the reduction of illicit drug trafficking and production abroad. Lastly, sanctions designed to place added pressure on the drug user. The ADAA projected budget for these amendments was $6.5 billion for the 1989 fiscal year”. The result of the Anti-Drug Abuse Act of 1988 was not foreseen. “After spending billions of dollars on law enforcement, doubling the number of arrests and incarcerations, and building prisons at a record pace, the system has failed to decrease the level of drug-related crime. Placing people in jail at increasing rates has had little long-term effect on the levels of crime”.
The media campaign mentioned in the act later became the National Youth Anti-Drug Media Campaign.
- Hall, D: Administrative Law Bureaucracy in a Democracy 4th Ed., page 2. Pearson, 2009.
- "Authorizing Legislation". Authorizations Language. U.S. Office of National Drug Control Policy.
- "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2015-02-17. Retrieved 2015-04-27.
- Peters, Gerhard; Woolley, John T. "Ronald Reagan: "Remarks on Signing the Anti-Drug Abuse Act of 1988 ," November 18, 1988". The American Presidency Project. University of California - Santa Barbara.