M110 or Measure 110, as popularly known, is a new law in Oregon passed in February of 2021 to reduce the heavy penalties if caught using hard drugs like methamphetamine, heroin, LSD, and others. Oregon was facing difficult situations of addiction crisis before the introduction of this bill.
The bill views addiction as a mental illness, treatable in one of the Portland addiction treatment centers. Taxes fund these centers from legal marijuana industries in Oregon.
Despite some people advocating the approach, others question its leniency, resulting in the following effects surrounding the adoption of measure 110.
Issues of limited access to treatment
There have been some progressive achievements with M110 in how people are being taken for care in a health care system since the police are no longer arresting low-quantity victims. The new law does not mean a reduced number of police on the streets, a reduced number of times the police stop vehicles, but relatively easy to identify people carrying drugs for personal or commercial use.
Some people feel that the treatment center is not ready to have them, and others think that the bill looks down upon some other recovery centers like Oregon Recovers.
However, the Oregon Health Authority is looking for new ways to ensure service access by improving Medicaid reimbursement rates for treatment providers.
Support and approval of Oregon treatment centers
Most people believe that through measure 110, there will be excess marijuana tax revenue, providing a platform for more people to get treatment when they want it. Moreover, the support of the law is evident through mobile vehicles providing services in communities and in the distribution of naloxone, which reverses the effects of other opioids.
Invasion of illegal cartels and drug experimentation
According to research, a country like Portugal tried decriminalizing drugs, leading to a rise in drug experimentation. However, this did not lead to regular use of the drugs. It’s feared from experiences in Portugal that Oregon can become a rich environment to be targeted by drug dealers because of less strict rules on drug decriminalization.
Bureaucracy delayed funds
The funds set aside by M110 for treatment have been held up by state bureaucracy, with the state claiming a careful review of the applicants due to unequal applications. According to state auditors, the treatment centers have only received a tiny fraction of these dollars.
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The issues of delayed funds are a big challenge to those prepared to use the money to fight addiction problems, and most people think that the staff assigned to the progress should have made some progress.
Overdose deaths in the play
The passing of M110 had one main goal: to improve Oregonians’ lives. However, this seems not to have played out because there has been a majority of opioid overdose deaths as well as a rise in visits to emergency room care centers after the measure 110 decriminalization law took effect.
Fewer hotline calls
If the victim in question calls a hotline for health assessment and counseling, the bill outlines a waiver of $100 at maximum. The statistics show that a year after decriminalization took effect, only a tiny percentage called to request services, and the few who got the citations never showed up in court.
The success of drug decriminalization but a rise in drug usage
Substance use and the success of M110 in Oregon go hand in hand. According to experts, the measure can succeed if only it provides a clear pathway to recovery from the growth of overdose cases. It is the role of many stakeholders in the state, including the police, health clinicians, portland addiction treatment centers, and all of us, to reduce the number of drug users.
Level of stability
Even though M110 cannot solve all the Oregonian’s problems, some level of stability is noticeable. The Dalles, a city in the east of Portland, managed to save some programs which were almost shutting down. Provisions of funds from the Bridges to Change organization held those affected programs.
According to reports from Oregon Health Authority, the initial M110 released funds supported more than 60 organizations in buying vehicles, acquiring recovery houses, and hiring full-time staff.
M110 so far seems to have been conceptualized in different ways. According to views from many people, the bill will be a step toward reducing addiction rates and improving wellness through treatment. A follow-up after treatment is essential to help drug addicts from falling back. The law is a new and very different model in the US, so it might not be the best time to judge its implementation.