Monthly Archives: March 2024

Recriminalization in Oregon

Three years ago, Oregon broke with the War on Drugs, decriminalizing the possession of most illicit drugs. The measure promised instead a “health-based approach.” But the legislature has just ended the short-lived experiment.

The law met stiff headwinds from the start: from the arrival of fentanyl on the West Coast to a relentless opposition campaign.

But part of what went wrong was a challenge for any legislation: implementation. How do you make a sweeping new approach work on the ground?

Morgan Godvin was at the frontlines of Oregon’s decriminalization fight. “We have come to a fork in the road,” she says. For now, progress towards an evidence-based approach to drug use “has fallen prey to fear-based policy.”

Full show notes