By Justin Wilson
Working to end the outrageous practice of civil forfeiture will not only need to take place in the court of law, but also in the court of public opinion. IJ’s communications and activism teams are already putting a plan into action.
In the past two months, legislators in both the U.S. House and Senate introduced legislation to reform federal forfeiture laws, drawing heavily from IJ’s expertise. The Daily Show with Jon Stewart recently exposed the practice with a segment called “Highway-Robbing Highway Patrolmen.”
In July, IJ launched EndForfeiture.com to educate the public about civil forfeiture as part of our successful litigation initiative. The site gives visitors easy access to a variety of information about civil forfeiture, including our lawsuits, reports, and latest news.
Despite the outrageous facts about civil forfeiture, it is only starting to capture the public’s attention. Thanks in part to IJ’s outreach efforts, that is changing. In the last year alone, Google reports that the number of Americans searching for information on civil forfeiture has increased by 300 percent.
With EndForfeiture.com, our ongoing legal initiatives and our in-depth reports, IJ will continue to drive the debate about forfeiture abuse and bring an end to this unconstitutional practice.
Justin Wilson is IJ’s director of communications.