Drug Policy Forum of Massachusetts


 
Massachusetts State Legislation

Treatment

Bill Number: H.2999

Sponsors:

Petition by Frank I. Smizik, Benjamin Swan, Patricia D. Jehlen, Byron Rushing, Ellen Story and Dianne Wilkerson.

Official Summary:

Relative to legislation to provide for a drug treatment program for low-level offenders under court supervision.

DPFMA Position/Summary:

DPFMA helped draft and find a sponsor for this bill which would allow judges to divert defendants into substance abuse services for first and second non-violent, drug possession offenses. Companion Bill to S.1139.

Action on Bill:

  • 01/01/03 H Referred to the committee on The Judiciary
  • 01/01/03 S Senate concurred
  • Public Hearing date Apr 10, 2003 at 1:00pm in Room A-1
  • No New Listing 3/26/04

Complete Bill Language & Info: www.state.ma.us/legis/bills/house/ht02999.htm

Bill Number: S.1139

Sponsors:

Petition by Dianne Wilkerson, Cynthia S. Creem and Patricia D. Jehlen.

Official Summary:

Relative to legislation to provide for a drug treatment program for low-level offenders under court supervision.

DPFMA Position/Summary:

DPFMA helped draft and find a sponsor for this bill which would allow judges to divert defendants into substance abuse services for first and second non-violent, drug possession offenses. Companion Bill to H.2999.

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Action on Bill:

  • 01/01/03 S Referred to the committee on The Judiciary
  • 01/01/03 H House concurred
  • Public Hearing date Oct 23 Room A-1
  • 03/25/04 H Accompanied a study order, see H4609

Complete Bill Language & Info: www.state.ma.us/legis/bills/st01139.htm

 
Fact
In 2002, the Bush administration spent more than $18.822 billion on the "War on Drugs."

Fact
The United States has locked up nearly a half a million people for non-violent drug offenses. We now have the largest prison population in the world.

Fact
In 2000, Massachusetts had the highest reported rate of illegal drug use in the nation. In 2001, there were over 14,000 adult drug arrests in Massachusetts, of which nearly 75% were for possession.

Fact
In 1999, minorities, who use & sell drugs at similar or lower rates than whites and who represent less than 20% of the state population, made up 54% of all state drug convictions, 80% of all mandatory drug convictions, and in Suffolk County, 89% of all school-zone convictions (imposing a mandatory minimum sentence of two years).

Fact
Research shows that decriminalizing marijuana in Massachusetts would save the state at least $24.3 million in law enforcement resources and would not lead to an increase in marijuana use.

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