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Thu Sep 10, 2020, 02:05 PM

Oregon could become the first state to decriminalize drugs in November


Zachary A. Siegel


Known as Measure 110, or the Drug Addiction Treatment and Recovery Act, the citizen-led ballot initiative would swap arrests and criminal penalties for a noncriminal $100 citation, and it would fund more treatment services. This would mark a momentous shift in favor of a public health-focused approach to substance use, and a turn away from policies that incarcerate people or at least saddle them with a criminal conviction over behaviors tied to addiction.

“What we’re really trying to do is move substance use out of a criminal justice model and into a healthcare model where it belongs,” said Haven Wheelock, one of the initiative’s chief petitioners. Wheelock also works at downtown Portland’s Outside In, providing services to homeless youth and people who use drugs. “Punishing people for a substance use disorder is an ineffective way of changing people’s drug use behavior. We know that because we’ve been trying for a hundred years to punish people into not using substances, and it hasn’t worked.”

People who are booked in jail for substance use face heightened health risks given the substantial rate of overdoses and suicides in detention or upon release. And a criminal conviction over substance use often leads to mounting economic difficulties by limiting access to housing, employment, and student loans, which can make recovery more difficult.

Measure 110 would wipe away the vast majority of criminal cases for drug possession, a state analysis found. It would not decriminalize offenses associated with drug sales, nor would it stop law enforcement against drug possession since this would be treated as a civil infraction.

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Reply Oregon could become the first state to decriminalize drugs in November (Original post)
swag Sep 2020 OP
Eliot Rosewater Sep 2020 #1

Response to swag (Original post)

Thu Sep 10, 2020, 02:06 PM

1. Makes sense, just need a system in place to help those who will need it, but outlawing

drugs has NEVER worked.

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