• Advancing Legal Epidemiology: An Introduction

      Center for Public Health Law Research (Temple University Beasley School of Law) (2020-02-10)
    • Examining National Public Health Law to Realize the Global Health Security Agenda

      Center for Public Health Law Research (Temple University Beasley School of Law) (2017-03-31)
      Where the Global Health Security Agenda (GHSA) seeks to accelerate progress toward a world safe and secure from public health emergencies, the realization of GHSA ‘Action Packages’ will require national governments to establish necessary legal frameworks to prevent, detect, and respond to infectious disease. By analyzing the scope and content of existing national legislation in each of the GHSA Action Packages, this comparative cross-national research has developed a framework that disaggregates the legal domains necessary to meet each Action Package target. Based upon these legal domains, this study developed an assessment tool that can identify specific attributes of national legislation. This article applies this tool to assess the legal environment in twenty Sub-Saharan African countries, examining the content of laws across the GHSA Action Packages, analyzing the legal domains necessary to implement each Action Package, and highlighting specific national laws that reflect attributes of each legal domain.
    • Exploring the relationship between foot and car patrol in violent crime areas

      Center for Public Health Law Research (Temple University Beasley School of Law) (2013-03-01)
      Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to describe how the Philadelphia Police Department instituted a large-scale randomized controlled trial of foot patrol as a policing strategy and experienced 23 percent fewer violent crimes during the treatment period. The authors examine whether activities patrol officers were conducting might have produced the crime reduction. The activities of foot and car patrol officers research takes a closer look at what types are examined separately and differences between car patrol activities pre-intervention and during the intervention are explored. Activities of foot versus car patrol officers during the study period are compared across treatment and control areas. Design/methodology/approach: Official data on police officer activity are used to compare activities conducted by foot patrol officers with those by car patrol officers in 60 treatment (foot beat) and 60 control areas consisting of violent crime hot spots. Activities of car patrol officers are described preintervention and during the intervention. Foot patrol officers’ activities are described within treatment and control areas during the treatment phase of the experiment. Car patrol officers’ activities are reported separately. The statistical significance of changes in car patrol activity pre and during intervention is evaluated using a series of mixed model ANOVAs. Findings: There were noticeable differences in the activities conducted by foot and car patrol. Foot patrol officers spent most of their time initiating pedestrian stops and addressing disorder incidents, while car patrol officers handled the vast majority of reported crime incidents. Car patrol activity declined in both treatment and control areas during the intervention but there was no statistically significant difference between the treatment and the control areas. Research limitations/implications: The major limitation of this study is the restricted set of data describing officer activity that is captured by official records. Future studies should include a more robust ethnographic component to better understand the broad spectrum of police activity in order to more effectively gauge the ways in which foot patrol and carbased officers’ activities interact to address community safety. This understanding can help extend the literature on “coproduction” by highlighting the safety partnerships that may develop organically across individual units within a police organization. Practical implications: The study provides evidence that individual policing strategies undertaken by agencies impact one another. When implementing and evaluating new programs, it would be beneficial for police managers and researchers to consider the impact on activities of the dominant patrol style, as necessary, to understand how a specific intervention might have achieved its goal or why it might have failed to show an effect. Originality/value: The research contributes to the understanding of the separate and joint effects of foot and car patrol on crime. In addition, it provides police managers with a clearer picture of the ways in which foot patrol police and car based officers work to co-produce community safety in violent inner city areas.
    • Mapping medical marijuana: state laws regulating patients, product safety, supply chains and dispensaries, 2017

      Center for Public Health Law Research (Temple University Beasley School of Law) (2017-07-11)
      Aims: (1) To describe open source legal data sets, created for research use, that capture the key provisions of US state medical marijuana laws. The data document how state lawmakers have regulated a medicine that remains, under federal law, a Schedule I illegal drug with no legitimate medical use. (2) To demonstrate the variability that exists across states in rules governing patient access, product safety and dispensary practice. Methods: Two legal researchers collected and coded state laws governing marijuana patients, product safety and dispensaries in effect on 1 February 2017, creating three empirical legal data sets. We used summary tables to identify the variation in specific statutory provisions specified in each state's medical marijuana law as it existed on 1 February 2017. We compared aspects of these laws to the traditional Federal approach to regulating medicine. Full data sets, codebooks and protocols are available through the Prescription Drug Abuse Policy System (http://www.pdaps.org/; Archived at http://www.webcitation.org/6qv5CZNaZ on 2 June 2017). Results: Twenty-eight states (including the District of Columbia) have authorized medical marijuana. Twenty-seven specify qualifying diseases, which differ across states. All states protect patient privacy; only 14 protect patients against discrimination. Eighteen states have mandatory product safety testing before any sale. While the majority have package/label regulations, states have a wide range of specific requirements. Most regulate dispensaries (25 states), with considerable variation in specific provisions such as permitted product supply sources number of dispensaries per state and restricting proximity to various types of location. Conclusions: The federal ban in the United States on marijuana has resulted in a patchwork of regulatory strategies that are not uniformly consistent with the approach usually taken by the Federal government and whose effectiveness remains unknown.
    • Where Next for Opioids and the Law? Despair, Harm Reduction, Lawsuits, and Regulatory Reform

      Center for Public Health Law Research (Temple University Beasley School of Law) (2017-12-13)