Oregonians need treatment. Let's save lives.
Initiative Petition 44
Oregon ranks nearly last of all states in access to basic drug treatment. One in 11 Oregonians is addicted to drugs, and one to two Oregonians die of drug overdoses every day, sometimes while they are waiting to get treatment. This is a crisis.
Meanwhile, our current drug laws can ruin lives based on a single mistake. Possession of even a small amount of drugs can land someone in jail and saddle them with a lifelong criminal record that prevents them from getting a job, getting housing or even a credit card.
This ballot measure doesn’t legalize any drugs. Rather, it removes criminal penalties for small amounts of personal possession of drugs and connects people with drug treatment and recovery services. Using funds from Oregon’s existing marijuana tax, IP 44 will greatly expand access to drug treatment and recovery services throughout the state. Anyone who wants treatment will be able to get it, not just those who have the funds or “right” insurance plan.
Let’s save lives, not ruin them
People suffering from addiction need help, not criminal punishments. This measure would establish a humane, health-based approach to addressing drug addiction. People will no longer be arrested and put in jail simply for possession of small amounts of drugs. Instead, they will be connected to the right treatment or recovery services, including housing assistance, to help them get their lives back on track.
A more humane, effective approach that will save lives - and money
It costs nearly $30,000 to arrest, prosecute and jail someone for simple drug possession. It costs only about $10,000 to provide drug treatment to those people who want it. This measure will change our approach: instead of arresting and jailing people for drugs, we’d use marijuana tax revenue to pay for more addiction treatment services. It will save money and save lives.
Professionals and community leaders support Initiative Petition 44.
Drug addiction medicine researcher; Healthcare for the Homeless clinician
Executive Director, Unite Oregon
Founder, Central City Concern; Retired Director, Mental Health and Addiction for the State of Oregon
Kelsey Priest, PhD, MPh
Opioid treatment and policy researcher
Grandmother and retired corrections officer
Oregon father and grandfather
Executive Director, Mental Health and Addiction Association of Oregon
Sergeant Pete Tutmark (retired)
Clackamas County Sheriff’s Office