Research by Lauren Greer

Webinar | October 2015

Fighting a Heroin Epidemic in the SLC States

Lauren Greer

Recent reports from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reveal a significant increase in the use of heroin in the United States over the decade between 2002 and 2013. With increases spanning across gender, age groups, and all income levels, the rate of death from a heroin overdose has nearly quadrupled over the same period of time; in 2013 alone, more than 8,200 people died from a heroin overdose. As heroin abuse and addiction continue to rise to the levels of a public health emergency, states have begun to grapple with what resources and protocols are necessary to intervene with those already addicted to the drug and mitigate the side effects of its use, and what measures can be implemented to prevent others from starting to use heroin and other opiates. This webinar from the Southern Legislative Conference examined the policy options for lawmakers, recent legislative action in Kentucky to address the growing epidemic, and the efforts being undertaken by law enforcement in the SLC states to remove heroin from the streets.


Representative John C. Tilley, Kentucky
John C. “Jack” Killorin, Director, Atlanta-Carolinas High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area
Robert Childs, Executive Director, North Carolina Harm Reduction Coalition

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Policy Analysis | August 2015

Death Row Prisoners

Lauren Greer

On December 31, 2013, the most recent date for which data is available, 35 states and the federal government held prisoners who had been sentenced to death. The table below shows how many prisoners were currently being held under sentence of death by state or federal jurisdiction as of December 31, 2013, and the average number of years those prisoners had been on death row since sentenced. The total includes prisoners sentenced between 1974 and 2013, who remain sentenced to death. It should be noted that not all of these prisoners will be executed given that some may die while in custody, have their sentence commuted, or have their sentence overturned.

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Webinar | June 2015

Rural Development through Education

Lauren Greer and Mikko Lindberg

Estimates from the U.S. Census Bureau indicate that, between April 2010 and July 2012, nonmetropolitan counties, as a whole, experienced a decrease in total population for the first time. What this statistic does not detail, however, is the long-term trend of youth emigration from these rural areas and what impact these population shifts have on the vitality of rural communities. In fact, rural communities in the South continue to face serious challenges in getting highly educated students to return home after college graduation.

Research indicates that education may be a cause and effect for this rural “brain drain” phenomenon, and also the key to reversing the trend. Studies have shown that efforts to improve rural education contribute to rapid economic development in those areas, while a more educated community can serve as a catalyst for business expansion and increased civic engagement. This webinar highlighted the impact of education on rural development and examine initiatives in rural communities to entice educated former residents to return and invest in their hometowns.

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More Research by Lauren Greer