Minnesota Medical Association urges regional authorities to decriminalize substances

1 month ago · 0 comments

The Minnesota Medical Association (MMA) has called on state officials to immediately decriminalize the possession and use of drugs and psychoactive substances. As stated in the appeal of the association's representatives, the problem of drug addiction is to be solved by science and medicine, in particular, professional rehabilitation programs, and not by the mechanism of the justice system.

In the letter, doctors suggest that the authorities of the region consider the possibility of completely decriminalizing the possession and use of prohibited substances, and to carry out reforms, following the example of Portugal. Accordingly, in the vision of the representatives of the association, any resident and guest of the region, when detained by the police on the fact of possession or use of drugs, will receive a choice to voluntarily participate in rehabilitation programs, or pay fines / perform public works, in accordance with official sanctions. In this way, medical professionals hope to tackle the root cause and source of the problem of drug addiction, and not just "fight the symptoms" of the disease, as the justice system does.

According to the association itself, the corresponding action plan and recommendations were supported by the majority of the organization's board members, namely, 219 out of 253 people.

"At this point, years of practicing a zero-tolerance drug policy has shown it to be a total failure for its intended purposes," concludes the association's verdict.
“The fact that certain behaviors are criminalized does not make them disappear. On the contrary, they go into the shadows, thanks to which the underground drug market has been able to reach such a size and gigantic influence. It is possible that the regulation of this market, as well as the formation of an honest dialogue with the population about the real properties and risks of using psychoactive substances, will allow us to more effectively prevent the very manifestation of the problem of drug addiction and the associated social consequences and complications.”

In addition, representatives of the association also cited the success of other forms of decriminalization to the state authorities, in particular, the Colorado, Washington and Oregon models, where psychoactive substances were decriminalized and even partially regulated within the legal market.