A group called the Coalition to Fix and Improve Measure 110 filed a ballot initiative in Portland on Monday, calling to modify the voter-passed measure.
“We don’t want to get rid of Measure 110 completely. Oregonians voted for ballot Measure 110 believing that it would be a pathway to more people entering into treatment and recovery. Using the tax revenue off Oregon’s cannabis dollars is a way to do that,” coalition organizer Max Williams said.
In a report published by the Oregon Health Authority in July, unintentional overdose deaths have been on the rise since 2019:
Williams says Oregon needs to re-criminalize hard drugs to stop the increase of overdoses.
“Fentanyl, meth, heroine, etc. Our decision to decriminalize those has led actually to an incredible jump in overdose rates and overdose deaths, and the collateral damage associated with those drugs being readily available,” Williams said.
Measure 110 promised to distribute funding towards treatment and facilities for users in need. State Representative of Bend Jason Kropf says the roll out of those funds has been too slow.
“I’m in support of part of the measure that made sure we were making additional investments into treatment, infrastructure, and getting people the help that they need. I‘m not happy with the initial rollout of that. I think just about everybody would agree that we need to continue to do more work on this and changes are needed,” Kropf said.
Williams says while the group wants hard drugs re-criminalized, they do not want to put users in jail.
“The idea here is to minimally use the criminal justice system as a means of helping motivate people into mandatory treatment and recovery. Once that treatment, recovery, or supervision is over, the crime would be expunged off their record,” Williams said.
The Coalition to Fix and Improve Measure 110 says it hopes to have the amendment on Oregon voters’ ballots in November of 2024.