Non-profit

Law Enforcement Action Partnership

Location:

Medford, MA

Tax ID:

16-1645758

Tax-Exempt Status:

501(c)(3)

Budget (2018):

Revenue: $905,853
Expenses: $921,358
Assets: $599,353

Formation:

2002

The Law Enforcement Action Partnership (LEAP) is an advocacy organization that supports left-of-center criminal justice policy. Originally founded as Law Enforcement Against Prohibition in 2002, the organization was intended to combat drug prohibition but has since expanded to pursuing left-of-center criminal justice policy more broadly. [1] [2]

In addition to opposing drug prohibition in the United States, the organization opposes making U.S. foreign assistance or military aid conditional on recipient countries outlawing drugs. [3] LEAP advocates for social workers, rather than police officers, to serve as first responders in criminal matters that involve homelessness or mental health. [4] The organization also backs replacing police response to non-criminal matters with trained civilians who work as “community responders,” claiming that the system will decrease police violence and allegedly unnecessary arrests. [5]

In recent years, LEAP has also supported left-of-center immigration policy, calling on the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to eliminate a program that recruits local law enforcement officers to assist Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents in enforcing federal immigration laws. [6]

Background

LEAP is made up of criminal justice professionals, including former and current judges, correctional agents, and police officers, who advocate for the implementation of left-of-center drug and criminal justice policy. [7] [8] Retired police captain Peter Christ, a 20-year veteran in law enforcement, helped found what was originally called Law Enforcement Against Prohibition in March 2002, after over a decade of speaking out against the “war on drugs.” [9]

Originally founded to oppose strict drug policy, the organization has opposed incarceration for drug addicts, instead backing state-funded treatment programs. [10] The organization opposes outlawing drugs, arguing that there should be drug control and regulation to include age restriction on drug sales and use but no prohibition on illicit substances. [11] LEAP has argued that drug abuse is a public health problem and not a law enforcement matter, claiming that drug abusers should be only be held accountable if they commit a separate crime while under the influence. [12]

LEAP features a bureau of left-of-center speakers to make presentations to police, prosecutors, judges, corrections officials, and other criminal justice organizations. [13] The LEAP speakers’ bureau has grown to include 200 criminal justice professionals promoting the group’s agenda. [14]

LEAP is also a member of the National Coalition of Justice Practitioners, made up of a number of left-of-center law enforcement organizations. The coalition endorsed the election of President Joe Biden in 2020. [15]

Drug Policy

Law Enforcement Action Partnership has supported the decriminalization of marijuana at the federal level, working with the National Black Police Association and Fair and Just Prosecution to lead a letter that included the signatures of dozens of current and former prosecutors, judges, and police officers in support of a marijuana decriminalization bill sponsored by then-U.S. Senator Kamala Harris (D-CA) in the Senate and U.S. Representative Jerry Nadler (D-NY) in the House. [16]

LEAP has worked to oppose expanded regulations on other controlled substances as well. The organization has opposed a ban on menthol tobacco products, arguing that the ban would push the tobacco market underground and make regulation impossible. LEAP has also opposed the Biden administration-proposed ban on the grounds that it would allegedly disproportionately affect communities of color. [17]

LEAP has sought to extend its drug policy agenda abroad, criticizing the United States for making foreign aid and military assistance to Afghanistan, Mexico, and Central American counties contingent on their keeping drugs illegal. LEAP has claimed that the policy drags these counties into the war on drugs and has argued that the policy sends hundreds of billions of dollars to terrorists and international criminal networks that benefit from underground drug trafficking. [18]

Policing Policy Advocacy

In recent years, Law Enforcement Action Partnership has shifted its focus and begun advocating for left-of-center policy implementation surrounding policing. LEAP has called for an end to the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) 287(g) program and for an end to ICE detainers, in which local law enforcement authorities cooperate with immigration authorities to enforce federal law. In 2021, LEAP joined the left-of-center American Civil Liberties Union in signing a letter to Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas that called the program a “major factor destroying community trust” with local police. [19]

After George Floyd’s death while in police custody in 2020, LEAP called on Congress to establish national standards for the use of deadly force. LEAP called for the implementation of an independent national database to track police personnel records, the end of union-mandated destruction of personnel records, and increased reporting requirements regarding the use of force. [20] LEAP has also advocated for ending the use of no-knock warrants and spending more public dollars to use social workers as first responders in matters involving homelessness or mental health. [21]

In March 2021, LEAP teamed with the left-of-center Center for American Progress (CAP) for a joint study which surveyed eight cities and found that between 23% and 45% of all calls to 911 were for non-urgent or non-criminal matters. These included noise complaints, disorderly conduct, wellness checks, or behavioral health concerns. LEAP and CAP argued in their report that cites should establish civilian “community responders” to deal with such problems to reduce unnecessary police responses. The survey of eight American cities determined that community responders could handle between 21% and 38% of all 911 calls. [22]

Leadership

Diane Goldstein is the executive director of LEAP. She retired in 2004 after working as the first female lieutenant of the Redondo Beach, California Police Department. Goldstein is a 21-year law enforcement veteran who previously sat on the board of directors for LEAP from 2014 until 2020, including working as chair of the board from 2018 to 2020. [23]

Darby Beck is the chief operating officer of LEAP. As a student at the University of Washington, she interned for the ACLU and for U.S. District Judge Orlando Garcia in the Western District of Texas. [24] [25]

Amos Irwin is the program director for LEAP. Previously, Irwin worked as chief of staff at the Criminal Justice Policy Foundation. Irwin taught courses on the criminal justice system at the Northeastern University Foundation Year program, as well as at the Tufts University Osher Center. Irwin published a cost-benefit evaluation of supervised injection facilities, which allow drug users to use drugs under supervision in order to reduce fatal overdoses, in the Harm Reduction Journal and Journal of Drug Issues. [26]

Antoinette O’Neil is the director of human resources and financial administration. O’Neil previously managed the bakery at the Boston Convention Center. [27]

References

  1. “Who We Are.” Law Enforcement Action Partnership. Accessed April 23, 2021. https://lawenforcementactionpartnership.org/about-us/who-we-are/ ^
  2. “Drug Policy.” Law Enforcement Action Partnership. Accessed April 23, 2021. https://lawenforcementactionpartnership.org/our-issues/drug-policy/ ^
  3. “Global Issues.” Law Enforcement Action Partnership. Accessed April 23, 2021. https://lawenforcementactionpartnership.org/our-issues/global-issues/ ^
  4. Vanden Heuvel, Katrina. “How progressive district attorneys are leading the charge to fix our broken justice system.” The Washington Post. November 7, 2017. Accessed April 23, 2021. https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2021/02/09/how-progressive-district-attorneys-are-leading-charge-fix-our-broken-justice-system/ ^
  5. Pearl, Betsy and Irwin, Amos. “Introducing Community Responders: How To Dispatch the Right Response to Every 911 Call.” Center for American Progress. March 11, 2021. Accessed April 24, 2021. https://www.americanprogress.org/issues/criminal-justice/reports/2021/03/11/497069/introducing-community-responders-dispatch-right-response-every-911-call/ ^
  6. Castronuovo, Celine. “Law enforcement, ACLU urge Biden to end ICE partnership programs.” The Hill. March 17, 2021. https://thehill.com/policy/national-security/543496-law-enforcement-coalition-aclu-urge-biden-administration-to-end-ices ^
  7. “Who We Are.” Law Enforcement Action Partnership. Accessed April 23, 2021. https://lawenforcementactionpartnership.org/about-us/who-we-are/ ^
  8. Vanden Heuvel, Katrina. “How progressive district attorneys are leading the charge to fix our broken justice system.” The Washington Post. November 7, 2017. Accessed April 23, 2021. https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2021/02/09/how-progressive-district-attorneys-are-leading-charge-fix-our-broken-justice-system/ ^
  9. “Drug Policy.” Law Enforcement Action Partnership. Accessed April 23, 2021. https://lawenforcementactionpartnership.org/our-issues/drug-policy/ ^
  10. Law Enforcement Action Partnership. Ballotpedia. Accessed April 23, 2021. https://ballotpedia.org/Law_Enforcement_Action_Partnership ^
  11. Law Enforcement Action Partnership. Ballotpedia. Accessed April 23, 2021. https://ballotpedia.org/Law_Enforcement_Action_Partnership ^
  12. “Drug Policy.” Law Enforcement Action Partnership. Accessed April 23, 2021. https://lawenforcementactionpartnership.org/our-issues/drug-policy/ ^
  13. Law Enforcement Action Partnership. IdeaList. Accessed April 23, 2021. https://www.idealist.org/en/nonprofit/0bf1f7760a4748fbada89b0d688eddfa-law-enforcement-action-partnership-criminal-justice-reform-medford?redirected-from-listing=true ^
  14. “Who We Are.” Law Enforcement Action Partnership. Accessed April 23, 2021. https://lawenforcementactionpartnership.org/about-us/who-we-are/ ^
  15. Press Release. “National Coalition of Justice Practitioners Endorse Biden/Harris Presidential Ticket.” September 30, 2020. Accessed April 24, 2021 . https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/national-coalition-of-justice-practitioners-endorse-“bidenharris-presidential-ticket-301136713.html ^
  16. Folley, Aris. “Over 50 current, former law enforcement professionals sign letter urging Congress to decriminalize marijuana.” The Hill. August 19, 2020. https://thehill.com/homenews/state-watch/512834-over-50-current-and-former-law-enforcement-professionals-sign-letter ^
  17. “What tobacco bans mean for police-community relations.” Law Enforcement Action Partnership. Accessed April 23, 2021. https://lawenforcementactionpartnership.org/our-issues/police-community-relations/ ^
  18. “Global Issues.” Law Enforcement Action Partnership. Accessed April 23, 2021. https://lawenforcementactionpartnership.org/our-issues/global-issues/ ^
  19. Castronuovo, Celine. “Law enforcement, ACLU urge Biden to end ICE partnership programs.” The Hill. March 17, 2021. https://thehill.com/policy/national-security/543496-law-enforcement-coalition-aclu-urge-biden-administration-to-end-ices ^
  20. Hasse, Javier. “Group Of Pro-Cannabis Legalization Law Enforcement Agents Share Recommendations For Police Transparency, Accountability.” Yahoo News. June 5, 2020. Accessed April 24, 2021. https://finance.yahoo.com/news/group-pro-cannabis-law-enforcement-183912399.html ^
  21. Vanden Heuvel, Katrina. “How progressive district attorneys are leading the charge to fix our broken justice system.” The Washington Post. November 7, 2017. Accessed April 23, 2021. https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2021/02/09/how-progressive-district-attorneys-are-leading-charge-fix-our-broken-justice-system/ ^
  22. Pearl, Betsy and Irwin, Amos. “Introducing Community Responders: How To Dispatch the Right Response to Every 911 Call.” Center for American Progress. March 11, 2021. Accessed April 24, 2021. https://www.americanprogress.org/issues/criminal-justice/reports/2021/03/11/497069/introducing-community-responders-dispatch-right-response-every-911-call/ ^
  23. “Meet the Staff.” Law Enforcement Action Partnership. Accessed April 23, 2021. https://lawenforcementactionpartnership.org/meet-the-staff/ ^
  24. “Meet the Staff.” Law Enforcement Action Partnership. Accessed April 23, 2021. https://lawenforcementactionpartnership.org/meet-the-staff/ ^
  25. Judge Orlando Garcia. United States District Court. Western District of Texas. Accessed April 24, 2021. https://www.txwd.uscourts.gov/court-staff/chief-u-s-district-judge-orlando-l-garcia/ ^
  26. “Meet the Staff.” Law Enforcement Action Partnership. Accessed April 23, 2021. https://lawenforcementactionpartnership.org/meet-the-staff/ ^
  27. “Meet the Staff.” Law Enforcement Action Partnership. Accessed April 23, 2021. https://lawenforcementactionpartnership.org/meet-the-staff/ ^
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Nonprofit Information

  • Accounting Period: December - November
  • Tax Exemption Received: November 1, 2003

  • Available Filings

    Period Form Type Total revenue Total functional expenses Total assets (EOY) Total liabilities (EOY) Unrelated business income? Total contributions Program service revenue Investment income Comp. of current officers, directors, etc. Form 990
    2018 Dec Form 990 $905,853 $921,358 $599,353 $160,018 N $894,421 $10,237 $1,352 $89,233 PDF
    2017 Dec Form 990 $802,706 $636,169 $468,255 $13,416 N $792,332 $9,453 $189 $50,000 PDF
    2016 Dec Form 990 $762,086 $546,490 $290,076 $1,774 N $782,046 $6,470 $60 $50,192
    2015 Dec Form 990 $486,250 $582,312 $114,809 $18,103 N $538,663 $13,366 $0 $281,867 PDF
    2014 Dec Form 990 $636,629 $678,361 $220,407 $27,639 N $607,776 $28,664 $189 $50,137 PDF
    2013 Dec Form 990 $688,623 $602,812 $248,304 $13,804 N $676,362 $12,054 $207 $50,550 PDF
    2012 Dec Form 990 $608,224 $585,505 $160,028 $11,339 N $601,637 $6,471 $116 $50,000 PDF
    2011 Dec Form 990 $1,360,135 $551,805 $150,057 $24,087 N $674,957 $685,178 $0 $50,000 PDF

    Additional Filings (PDFs)

    Law Enforcement Action Partnership

    Mystic Ave.
    Medford, MA 02155