Oregon backtracks on drug legalization as overdose deaths rise

In 2020, Oregon handed a number of the most liberal drug legal guidelines in america. The regulation decriminalized possession of small doses of the unlawful drug and channeled tens of millions of {dollars} from marijuana taxes to rehabilitation providers. Measure 110 sought to deal with habit as a public well being downside and never a criminal offense. As a substitute of arresting shoppers, they’re given a ticket with a quotation that they’ll alternate for medical help providers. Ignoring the effective has no authorized penalties. Solely 4% of those that acquired a effective went to assist providers.

Overdose deaths in Oregon elevated 44% in 2021 and can repeat this improve in 2022. Given the numbers, state Democrats have proposed an modification to Measure 110 that might make possession of small doses of the drug punishable by 30 days in jail, with the choice to commute. Punishment for rehabilitative therapy. For his or her half, Republican lawmakers have proposed toughening the regulation with a one-year jail sentence for drug possession, although in addition they provide the choice of commuting the sentence to assist providers and probation. In line with an Emerson College ballot, 56% of Oregonians assist repealing Measure 110, whereas 64% favor amending it.

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