How does your state measure up when it comes to establishing policies that reduce the harms of both drug use and drug prohibition?
Does the state permit access to clean syringes for people who inject drugs?
Does the state have naloxone training & distribution programs available to the public at syringe exchange programs or other facilities?
Does the state have a 911 Good Samaritan law?
Does the state have legal methadone access?
Are marijuana possession and use legal for medical purposes?
Is there a government-regulated distribution system for medical marijuana?
More information on medical marijuana:
What are the criminal penalties for marijuana possession?
How many people are arrested for a drug offense each year?
What are the racial disparities in arrest rates?
Total population (2011): 42.4% white, 50.7% black.
Drug Arrests (2011): 10.0% white, 89.5% black.
What happens to people’s voting rights when they become part of the criminal justice system?
Vote restored after: Term of Incarceration
D.C. Law Encourages Calling 911 in Drug Overdose Cases; Some Drug and Alcohol Law Violations Not a Crime When Help is Sought
D.C. Part of National Momentum to Fight Overdose Deaths with 911 Good Samaritan Laws and Increased Naloxone Access
In a recent memorandum, Metropolitan Police Department Chief Cathy Lanier has instructed her police force to observe protections from arrest and charge granted under a D.C. law designed to encourage residents to seek immediate medical assistance for a person experiencing an overdose. The Good Samaritan Overdose Prevention Amendment Act of 2012 (#A19-564), which was passed by the D.C.
Duke University-Trained Medical Doctor To Build Community Support for Ballot Initiative 71 that Would Legalize Marijuana Possession
Organizing Focus Will Be on Racial Disparities and Societal Harms Not Resolved by Marijuana Decriminalization
WASHINGTON, DC—Former surgeon, Dr. Malik Burnett has joined Drug Policy Alliance as a full-time organizer in the District of Columbia. Burnett, a policy manager based in DPA’s Office of National Affairs in Washington, DC, will prioritize building support for Initiative 71, the taxation and regulation of marijuana through the D.C. Council and other drug policy reform initiatives that will advance social and racial justice in the nation's capital.
In Congressional Hearing, Republican-Led Panel Criticizes New D.C. Law
D.C. Council Passed Decriminalization Law to Address Racial Disparities and Out-of-Control Arrests
The House Oversight and Government Reform Committee’s Subcommittee on Government Operations held a hearing today on legislation recently passed by the District of Columbia that eliminates criminal penalties for marijuana possession. The panel, chaired by Rep. John Mica (R-FL), heard testimony describing severe racial disparities in the enforcement of D.C. marijuana laws and strong support among D.C. lawmakers and residents for eliminating criminal penalties for marijuana possession.
Legislation Ends Marijuana Possession Arrests in D.C. and Reduces Racial Disparities Perpetuated by Marijuana Prohibition
Religious, Civil Rights, Anti-Poverty and Community Voices Praise Mayor and Urge Against Congressional Interference
Today, Mayor Vincent Gray approved legislation passed by D.C. Councilmembers on March 4th that would eliminate criminal penalties for the possession of one ounce or less of marijuana in the nation’s capital and treat possession as a civil offense subject to a small fine. In accordance with federal law, the legislation will not become law until it has been transmitted by the D.C. Council to Congress and available for a period of time for review that is expected to stretch into the summer months.
Marijuana Decriminalization and Medical Marijuana Legislation Recently Introduced
Unprecedented Momentum for Drug Policy Reform Continues to Spread Throughout Latin America
This week, legislators from the Mexican Congress and the Mexico City Assembly will be in DC and NY to discuss the bills they introduced to decriminalize the consumption and purchase of marijuana for personal use in Mexico City and to legalize medical marijuana countrywide.
Legislation Ends Marijuana Possession Arrests in D.C.; Bill Goes to Mayor Vincent Gray for Signature
Advocates Cheer Passage of Legislation that Will Reduce Enormous Racial Disparities Perpetuated by Marijuana Prohibition
In a vote today of 10-1, the D.C. Council approved legislation that would eliminate criminal penalties for the possession of one ounce or less of marijuana in the nation’s capital and treat possession as a civil offense. The legislation goes next to District of Columbia Mayor Vincent Gray who has expressed support for decriminalization.
D.C. Residents Invited to Learn Candidate Views on High Profile Racial and Criminal Justice Issues
Forum Addresses Issues Pertinent to D.C. Residents Affected by Criminal Justice System
A coalition of civil rights and civil liberties’ organizations are hosting "Race, Policing and Criminal Justice," a D.C. mayoral forum that will educate the public about candidate’s views on criminal and racial justice issues. On any given day in the District, more than 16,000 people are under court-ordered supervision or incarcerated. Thousands more D.C. residents are affected by a loved one’s involvement in the criminal justice system and how law enforcement interacts with the community.
Bill Would Reduce Enormous Racial Disparities in Criminal Justice System
Last-Minute Amendments Weaken Bill; Advocates Warn That “Public Consumption” Provision Will Perpetuate Unfair and Costly Arrests
The D.C. Council took a major step to decriminalizing marijuana in the nation’s capital today by voting 11-1 in favor of a bill that would eliminate criminal penalties for the possession of one ounce or less of marijuana and treat possession as a civil offense. The D.C. Council takes a final vote on the bill in early March; it is expected to pass and to be signed into law by the mayor. It is viewed by both council members and advocates as a model for other jurisdictions looking to reduce racial disparities in the criminal justice system.
Decriminalization Supported by Most Councilmembers and Has Enormous Public Support; Bill Would Reduce Enormous Racial Disparities in Criminal Justice System
Advocates Urge Lawmakers to Pass Bill As-Is and Reject Amendments Weakening the Bill
Washington, D.C. lawmakers are expected to vote Tuesday on legislation approved in January by the Committee on the Judiciary and Public Safety that would eliminate criminal penalties for the possession of one ounce or less of marijuana and treat possession and public consumption as civil offenses. Since its introduction in July 2013 by Councilmember Tommy Wells (D-Ward 6), the legislation has received overwhelming public support.