The social impact of decriminalizing marijuana

What is the impact of removing jail as a sentencing option for cannabis possession for a levels of cannabis use; b individual cannabis possession offenders; and c the criminal justice system? Considering the so-called decriminalization states in the USA and Australia, describe the measures implemented there, assess the evidence of impact, and discuss the methodological strengths and weaknesses of the evaluation studies. Introduction One option available to drug policy makers is the removal of incarceration as a sentencing option for cannabis offenders. In the instance of cannabis, perhaps more debate has been devoted to the question of whether or not simple possession of cannabis should be treated severely, for example with possible or probable jail terms, or more leniently, in the case of treating cannabis possession as a ticketable offence, which largely consists of leveling a small fine.

Policies[ edit ] The United Nations Convention Against Illicit Traffic in Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances made it mandatory for the signatory countries to "adopt such measures as may be necessary to establish as criminal offences under its domestic law" art.

Criminalization also applies to the "cultivation of opium poppy, coca bush or cannabis plants for the purpose of the production of narcotic drugs". Decriminalization usually applies to offences related to drug consumption and may include either the imposition of sanctions of a different kind administrative or the abolition of all sanctions; other noncriminal laws then regulate the conduct or activity that has been decriminalized.

Depenalisation usually consists of personal consumption as well as small-scale trading and generally signifies the elimination or reduction of custodial penalties, while the conduct or activity still remains a criminal offence.

The term legalization refers to the removal of all drug-related offences from criminal law: The two most common positions are drug legalization or re-legalizationand drug decriminalization. Drug legalization[ edit ] Drug legalization calls for a return to the preth century situation in which almost all drugs were legal.

Drug liberalization - Wikipedia

This would require ending government-enforced prohibition on the distribution or sale and personal use of specified or all currently banned drugs. Proposed ideas range from full legalization which would completely remove all forms of government control, to The social impact of decriminalizing marijuana forms of regulated legalization, where drugs would be legally available, but under a system of government control which might mean for instance: The regulated legalization system would probably have a range of restrictions for different drugs, depending on their perceived risk, so while some drugs would be sold over the counter in pharmacies or other licensed establishments, drugs with greater risks of harm might only be available for sale on licensed premises where use could be monitored and emergency medical care made available.

Examples of drugs with different levels of regulated distribution in most countries include: Full legalization is often proposed by groups such as libertarians who object to drug laws on moral grounds, while regulated legalization is suggested by groups such as Law Enforcement Against Prohibition who object to the drug laws on the grounds that they fail to achieve their stated aims and instead greatly worsen the problems associated with use of prohibited drugs, but who acknowledge that there are harms associated with currently prohibited drugs which need to be minimized.

Not all proponents of drug re-legalization necessarily share a common ethical framework, and people may adopt this viewpoint for a variety of reasons. In particular, favoring drug legalization does not imply approval of drug use.

Proponents of drug decriminalization generally support the use of fines or other punishments to replace prison terms, and often propose systems whereby illegal drug users who are caught would be fined, but would not receive a permanent criminal record as a result.

A central feature of drug decriminalization is the concept of harm reduction.

No shortcut to legalization

Drug decriminalization is in some ways an intermediate between prohibition and legalization, and has been criticized as being "the worst of both worlds", in that drug sales would still be illegal, thus perpetuating the problems associated with leaving production and distribution of drugs to the criminal underworld, while also failing to discourage illegal drug use by removing the criminal penalties that might otherwise cause some people to choose not to use drugs.

However, there are many that argue that the decriminalization of possession of drugs would redirect focus of the law enforcement system of any country to put more effort into arresting dealers and big time criminals, instead of arresting minor criminals for mere possession, and thus be more effective.

The drugs are still illegal, the police just handles the situation differently. This also decreases the amount of money the government spends fighting a war on drugs and money spent keeping drug users incarcerated.

Portugal is the first country that has decriminalized the possession of small amounts of drugs, to positive results.

Economics[ edit ] There are numerous economic and social impacts of the criminalization of drugs. Prohibition increases crime theft, violence, corruption and drug price and increases potency.

Milton Friedman estimated that over 10, deaths a year in the US are caused by the criminalization of drugs, and if drugs were to be made legal innocent victims such as those shot down in drive by shootings, would cease or decrease.

The economic inefficiency and ineffectiveness of such government intervention in preventing drug trade has been fiercely criticised by drug-liberty advocates.

The social impact of decriminalizing marijuana

The War on Drugs of the United States, that provoked legislation within several other Western governments, has also garnered criticism for these reasons.The War on Drugs doesn’t work.

This statement becomes obvious if you live on the U.S./Mexico Border. Especially if your home is in El Paso, Texas, and you have witnessed Ciudad Juárez—El Paso’s sister city—become one of the deadliest cities in the world.

The bill, which also aims to address racial profiling, would make first-time drug possession offenses a misdemeanor in an attempt to avoid mass incarceration.

The social impact of decriminalizing marijuana

Impact of the Legalization and Decriminalization of Marijuana on the DWI System project examines how the legalization and decriminalization of marijuana impacts a State’s DWI system. The background: In , the dictatorship that had isolated Portugal from the rest of the world for nearly half a century came to an Carnation Revolution was a bloodless military-led coup.

Drug liberalization is the process of eliminating or reducing drug prohibition laws. Variations of drug liberalization include: drug legalization, drug relegalization and drug decriminalization.

Social Impact and Effects of Marijuana

Whilst many people would argue that decriminalization will only cause an increase in usage, studies from California and Colorado, two states who implemented the policy, found that '"decriminalization.

As legal and public views shift, we thought we'd take a look at the science of decriminalizing drugs. What can science actually answer about the effects of looser drug laws?

14 Years After Decriminalizing All Drugs, Here's What Portugal Looks Like