Addictions, Drug & Alcohol Institute

UW, ADAI Study Demonstrates Success of LEAD in Reducing Recidivism


King County’s Law Enforcement Assisted Diversion (LEAD) program aims to break the cycle of arrest and incarceration among low-level drug dealers, addicts and prostitutes.

In 2015, a review of LEAD by UW’s Harm Reduction Research and Treatment Lab, led by Susan Collins and Seema Clifasefi of HaRRT and Heather Lonczak of the UW Alcohol and Drug Abuse Institute, found that LEAD significantly reduced recidivism among low-level drug dealers, among others, with people in the program 58 percent less likely to be arrested again. In fact, the program was considered such a success that other cities started using it, including Los Angeles, San Francisco, Brooklyn, New Orleans, Houston, among others.

LEAD is now being extended to 3 additional cities in King County. Read more from Crosscut.