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Oregon may revive penalties for drug possession. What will the change do?

Oregon is poised to step back from its first-in-the-nation drug decriminalization law with a new measure approved by the state Senate that would reinstate criminal penalties for possessing small amounts of some drugs.
The law, which took effect in 2021, decriminalized possession and personal use of all drugs, including small amounts of heroin, methamphetamine, LSD, oxycodone and others.

Supporters of revising the statute say it’s needed to address the state’s overdose crisis, while opponents say it reverts to an approach that hasn’t been beneficial and could violate civil rights.

Here’s a look at how it could change the way drug possession is handled by law enforcement and prosecutors …

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