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Two men sue PennDOT, Gov. Tom Wolf alleging that license suspension illegally discriminates against drug offenders

PHILADELPHIA– Two men sued PennDOT and Governor Tom Wolf in federal court last week for automatically suspending their driver’s licenses when they were convicted of minor drug offenses.

The suspensions are mandated under state law, and the lawsuit argues that they are “counterproductive and discriminatory.”

Under the law, drug-related driver’s license suspensions can last from six months up to two years.

The lawsuit notes that between 2011 and 2016, Pennsylvania suspended the licenses of nearly 149,000 drivers for drug convictions unrelated to traffic safety. 

The lawsuit goes on to state “Levying additional punishments against offenders who have already been sentenced by a court of law is irrational — license suspension only hinders former drug offenders from finding and maintaining lawful work, obtaining necessary medical care, supporting dependent relatives, and maintaining stabilizing social connections while dealing with the fallout of a drug conviction.

Both of the plaintiffs named in the lawsuit were charged with possession of a small amount of marijuana.