ACLU of New Jersey Campaign Strategist Ami Kachalia today released the following statement as lawmakers passed S3954/A5610, reinstating fines for youth alcohol possession:   

“We are deeply disappointed that the New Jersey Senate has approved S3954/A5610, legislation that will reinstate fines and criminal consequences for youth alcohol possession and put youth – particularly low-income, Black, and Latinx youth – at increased risk of criminalization, financial precarity, and harm. That this bill was passed absent data and the convening of the taskforce required under the 2021 youth alcohol and cannabis law is particularly alarming. Instead of passing punitive and ineffective policies, New Jersey should be increasing its investment in public health solutions. We urge Governor Murphy to veto this bill and commit to protecting youth across New Jersey.”