Oregon activists charge betrayal as drug decrim overturned

Posted on April 27th, 2024 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , , , , , .

OregonOregon Gov. Tina Kotek on April 2 signed a law recriminalizing the possession of personal quantities of illicit drugs. The law overturns Measure 110, approved by voters with 58% support in 2020, which made personal-use possession of drugs such as heroin, cocaine and methamphetamine only punishable by a ticket and a maximum fine of $100.

The new law makes personal-use possession of such drugs a misdemeanor punishable by a jail term of up to six months—altough it does open avenues for mandatory treatment programs as an alternative to prison.

The recrim comes in response to a spike in overdose deaths and substance abuse rates in the state. However, the activists who fought for Measure 110 say decrim was overturned before it had a chance to work.

Advocates point to Portugal, which has seen a 75% drop in overdose deaths since a decriminzaization policy was adopted in 2001.  But it took over three years for these improvements to be felt.

Oregon's experiment “was not given the time that it needed," Tera Hurst, director of Oregon's Health Justice Recovery Alliance, told Politico. "This is a political response to a serious problem," she said of the Measure 110 repeal. "This is life and death." (More at AP, The Hill)

Photo by GreenwichMeanTime   

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