Oregon Decriminalizes All Drugs, While D.C. Decriminalizes Psychedelics

While the 2020 presidential results remained unclear the morning after Election Day, one thing for certain is that voters overwhelmingly approved a series of measures aimed at the war on drugs, including the legalization of marijuana in New Jersey, Arizona, and Montana, the decriminalization of psychedelic mushrooms in Washington, D.C. and the decriminalization of all drugs in Oregon.

Voters in the state of Oregon also voted in favor of Measure 109, which allows for patients 21-and-over to buy, possess, and consume psychedelic drugs at “psilocybin service centers,” under the supervision of trained facilitators, while Measure 110 — which decriminalized personal possession of drugs like heroin, methamphetamine, LSD and MDMA — also overwhelmingly passed with 60 percent of votes in favor; Measure 110 also called for the establishment of a drug addiction treatment program funded by its marijuana tax revenue.

“Today’s victory is a landmark declaration that the time has come to stop criminalizing people for drug use,” Kassandra Frederique, executive director of the Drug Policy Alliance that spearheaded the measure, said in a statement.

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Congress Should Let D.C. Decriminalize Psychedelics, Advocates Say

Drug policy reform advocates are asking a key congressional committee to reject a Republican lawmaker’s attempt to block Washington, D.C. from enacting an initiative to decriminalize certain psychedelics.

Rep. Andy Harris (R-MD)—who has also championed provisions preventing D.C. from implementing legal marijuana sales after local voters passed a cannabis initiative in 2014—signaled last week that he’s planning to introduce an amendment to a spending bill during a committee meeting on Wednesday that would restrict the District from allowing the psychedelics measure to be implemented even if it is approved by voters in November.

The Drug Policy Alliance (DPA) is in favor of the proposal and, on Tuesday, it sent a letter to leadership in the House Appropriations Committee asking members to oppose Harris’s amendment and any other effort to restrict the democratic process for D.C. residents.

The measure, which hasn’t formally qualified for the ballot yet but received significantly more signatures than required when activists submitted them last week, would make a wide range of entheogenic substances including psilocybin mushrooms and ayahuasca among the jurisdiction’s lowest law enforcement priorities. However, it wouldn’t technically change local statute.

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