Drug Control

Oregon Reinstates Criminal Penalties for Drug Possession

Main image to the post Oregon Reinstates Criminal Penalties for Drug Possession

Oregon Governor Tina Kotek has signed a bill reinstating criminal penalties for possessing small quantities of hard drugs. This move reverses a groundbreaking law that aimed to address the escalating addiction and overdose crisis by decriminalizing such possession.

Under the new legislation, possession of small amounts of drugs like heroin or methamphetamine will be classified as a misdemeanor, punishable by up to six months in jail. However, drug treatment will be offered as an alternative to criminal prosecution.

Governor Kotek emphasized the importance of collaboration between state agencies and participating organizations, including the criminal justice system and healthcare providers, for the law's effectiveness. She highlighted the crucial roles of courts, law enforcement, defense attorneys, district attorneys, and behavioral health providers in achieving the intended goals of the legislation.

Kotek stressed the need to balance local program design with statewide consistency and standardization where appropriate. She emphasized the importance of ongoing dialogue and collaboration among all stakeholders to ensure the law's successful implementation and its impact on addressing the addiction and overdose crisis in Oregon.

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May 21, 2023 | 05:09