A new study out by the Mexican Institute for Competitiveness finds that marijuana legalization and taxation in Oregon, Washington or Colorado would significantly weaken Mexican drug cartels. The study, which has been covered in leading national and international news outlets including Forbes and The New York Times, affirms similar recent findings by the leading think tank, the RAND Corporation.
At a press conference Friday morning in downtown Portland, former and current police and probation officers, corrections guards, and defense attorneys will address the findings of the report and discuss how Measure 80 will improve Oregon's public safety.
According to Harvard economist Jeffrey Miron, the state of Oregon spends $60 million every year on marijuana-related law-enforcement, a staggering number that includes police and sheriff overtime costs, processing fees, courtroom expenses and jail and prison costs. Ninety-four percent of arrests are for possession.
Beyond the dollars-and-cents costs of marijuana prohibition in Oregon are the human costs. Oregonians, especially Oregonians of color, face a much more difficult time getting financial aid for school, landing decent jobs and building positive lives after having been arrested or incarcerated. And marijuana-related offenses wreak havoc on our communities, tearing children away from parents and fathers away from families.
Lownsdale Square in Downtown Portland
SW 4th Avenue and Main Street
Portland, OR 97204
Friday, November 2
10 a.m.: Media, speakers arrive
10:30 a.m.: Speakers
11 a.m.: Q&A
· Paul Stanford, Chief Petitioner, Yes On 80
· Carla Hanson, Chairwoman, Multnomah County Democrats*, former Lawrence, KS Police Officer
· Anne Witte, Attorney, Member of the Oregon Criminal Defense Lawyers Association
· Madeline Martinez, Representative, Law Enforcement Against Prohibition, former corrections guard
· Serra Frank, Founder, Moms for Marijuana
*For identification purposes only
About Measure 80
When eight out of 10 kids say it's easy for them to get marijuana, but it's harder for them to get liquor, we know that prohibition has failed and that regulation is the smarter choice. Though legal, alcohol is heavily regulated, allowing us to educate our citizens and regulate an industry.
Marijuana is as ubiquitous in our society as prescription medicine or coffee and needs to be regulated accordingly, according to the sponsors of Measure 80, which will regulate marijuana like liquor -- for adults 21 and over, sold through state-licensed stores only, and with 90 percent of tax revenues going to the state's general fund to pay for schools and social services. Measure 80 will also finally re-allow Oregon farmers to grow hemp for biofuel, food, fiber and medicine.