If you need any help or a chat then IM/PM or email me, Chip

Author Topic: Seattle Has Figured Out How to End the War on Drugs  (Read 1062 times)

Offline Chip (OP)

  • Server Admin
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Administrator
  • *****
  • Join Date: Dec 2014
  • Location: Australia
  • Posts: 6336
  • Reputation Power: 0
  • Chip has hidden their reputation power
  • Gender: Male
  • Last Login:October 23, 2020, 11:57:03 AM
  • Deeply Confused Learner
  • Profession: IT Engineer
Seattle Has Figured Out How to End the War on Drugs
« on: September 04, 2019, 12:17:08 AM »
source: https://www.nytimes.com/2019/08/23/opinion/sunday/opioid-crisis-drug-seattle.html

Seattle Has Figured Out How to End the War on Drugs

Aug. 23, 2019

SEATTLE — On gritty streets where heroin, fentanyl and meth stride like Death Eaters, where for decades both drugs and the war on drugs have wrecked lives, the city of Seattle is pioneering a bold approach to narcotics that should be a model for America.

Anyone caught here with a small amount of drugs — even heroin — isn’t typically prosecuted. Instead, that person is steered toward social services to get help.

This model is becoming the consensus preference among public health experts in the U.S. and abroad. Still, it shocks many Americans to see no criminal penalty for using drugs illegally, so it takes courage and vision to adopt this approach: a partial retreat in the war on drugs coupled with a stepped-up campaign against addiction.

The war on drugs has been one of America’s most grievous mistakes, resulting in as many citizens with arrest records as with college diplomas. At last count, an American was arrested for drug possession every 25 seconds, yet the mass incarceration this leads to has not turned the tide on narcotics.

The number of opioid users has surged, and more Americans now die each year from overdoses than perished in the Vietnam, Afghan and Iraq wars combined. And that doesn’t account for the way drug addiction has ripped apart families and stunted children’s futures. More than two million children in America live with a parent suffering from an illicit-drug dependency.



Officer Victor Maes of the Seattle Police Department talks to a man found possessing drugs.

So Seattle is undertaking what feels like the beginning of a historic course correction, with other cities discussing how to follow. This could be far more consequential than the legalization of pot: By some estimates, nearly half of Americans have a family member or close friend enmeshed in addiction, and if the experiment in Seattle succeeds, we’ll have a chance to rescue America from our own failed policies.

In effect, Seattle is decriminalizing the use of hard drugs. It is relying less on the criminal justice toolbox to deal with hard drugs and more on the public health toolbox.

Decriminalization is unfolding here in part because of Dan Satterberg, the prosecuting attorney for King County, which includes Seattle. It’s also arguably underway because of what happened to his little sister, Shelley Kay Satterberg.

At the age of 14, Shelley ran away from home because her parents wouldn’t let her go to a concert on a school night. It was a rebellion that proved devastating. She was away for several months, was gang-raped by two men, was introduced to hard drugs and began to self-medicate with those drugs to deal with the trauma of rape.

As Dan Satterberg rose through the ranks of prosecutors, Shelley Satterberg wrestled with addiction. She was never arrested or jailed (middle-class drug users often avoid police attention, which focuses on marginalized people who use or sell in public).

Dan told me that he was angry at Shelley — angry that she had made terrible choices, angry that she had hurt their parents. But over time he also concluded that his own approach of prosecuting drug users accomplished little, except that it isolated them from the family and friends who offered the best support system to escape addiction.

In 2015, Dan took Shelley to Navos, a nonprofit that provides mental health and addiction services, and she was able to stop using street drugs and gradually put her life back in order. Dan saw that treatment made a huge difference in Shelley’s life and became a believer.

Yet it wasn’t enough. Shelley died of a urinary tract infection last year at age 51, a consequence of previous drug and alcohol abuse.

“It gave me some insight about what works better than jail,” Dan Satterberg told me. “What Shelley needed was not a jail cell and not a judge wagging a finger at her, but she needed some support.”

Seattle’s first crucial step came in 2011 when Satterberg and others started a program called LEAD, short for Law Enforcement Assisted Diversion. The idea is that instead of simply arresting drug users for narcotics or prostitution, police officers watch for those who are nonviolent and want help, and divert them to social service programs and intensive case management.

this continues at the source link ...
I do not condone or support any illegal activities. All information is for theoretical discussion and wonder.
All activities discussed are considered fictional and hypothetical. Information of all discussion has been derived from online research and in the spirit of personal Freedom.

Tags:
 

Related Topics

  Subject / Started by Replies Last post
1 Replies
2310 Views
Last post April 02, 2015, 08:57:26 AM
by Chip
0 Replies
1893 Views
Last post August 10, 2015, 11:50:56 PM
by Chip
3 Replies
2787 Views
Last post July 09, 2016, 08:00:10 AM
by Mr.pooper
0 Replies
1949 Views
Last post July 16, 2016, 04:49:36 AM
by Chip
1 Replies
2486 Views
Last post September 06, 2016, 03:57:43 PM
by MoeMentim
1 Replies
2157 Views
Last post September 07, 2016, 06:21:18 PM
by CARNi
4 Replies
3799 Views
Last post November 04, 2016, 03:46:11 PM
by Iamonheroin
3 Replies
2820 Views
Last post October 09, 2017, 08:18:19 AM
by dillydudeEL14
0 Replies
1732 Views
Last post March 02, 2018, 02:06:08 AM
by Chip
0 Replies
1459 Views
Last post April 10, 2019, 01:18:01 PM
by smfadmin





TERMS AND CONDITIONS

In no event will d&u or any person involved in creating, producing, or distributing site information be liable for any direct, indirect, incidental, punitive, special or consequential damages arising out of the use of or inability to use d&u. You agree to indemnify and hold harmless d&u, its domain founders, sponsors, maintainers, server administrators, volunteers and contributors from and against all liability, claims, damages, costs and expenses, including legal fees, that arise directly or indirectly from the use of any part of the d&u site.


TO USE THIS WEBSITE YOU MUST AGREE TO THE TERMS AND CONDITIONS ABOVE



Founded December 2014
SimplePortal 2.3.6 © 2008-2014, SimplePortal