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Decriminalizing Drugs: Proposed Changes To Address the Opioid Epidemic in Maine


As the opioid epidemic in Maine continues to worsen, with a record number of overdoses during the pandemic, a bill before the legislature would decriminalize drug possession in Maine. People found with small amounts of substances would pay a fine and be steered to recovery programs, rather than going to jail. We’ll learn about the arguments for and against this approach, which is now being considered in other parts of the country as well.


Winifred Tate, director, Maine Drug Policy Lab at Colby College; associate professor, department of anthropology, Colby College; author, "Drugs, Thugs and Diplomats: US Policymaking in Colombia"

Jonathan Sahrbeck, district attorney, Cumberland County

Rep. Anne Perry, Maine House of Representatives, District 140, Calais; sponsored decriminalization bill LD967

Courtney Allen, policy director, Maine Recovery Advocacy Project

Robert Moulton, chief of police, Scarborough Police Department

Marshall Mercer, organizer, Maine Recovery Advocacy Project


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