Who is the Colorado Criminal Justice Reform Coalition?

Our mission is to reverse the trend of mass incarceration in Colorado. We are a coalition of nearly 7,000 individual members and over 100 faith and community organizations who have united to stop perpetual prison expansion in Colorado through policy and sentence reform.

Our chief areas of interest include drug policy reform, women in prison, racial injustice, the impact of incarceration on children and families, the problems associated with re-entry and stopping the practice of using private prisons in our state.

If you would like to be involved please go to our website and become a member.

Friday, May 18, 2007

SAFER To Run A New Pot Initiative

Denver police would have to make possession of small amounts of marijuana by adults their lowest law enforcement priority under a proposal a pro-pot group is pushing.

"We're doing this because the city has been unwilling to recognize the fact that people in Denver do not think adults should be punished for using marijuana, a less harmful drug than alcohol," Mason Tvert, executive director of Safer Alternative for Enjoyable Recreation, said Thursday.

In 2005, voters approved Initiative 100, which legalized the possession and private use of 1 ounce or less of marijuana by adults.

Since then, arrests for misdemeanor possession have gone up.

"The people of the city have no other option but to move forward with a measure to tell the city how they want it run," Tvert said.

Tvert is meeting with city officials at 2 p.m. Monday for a "review and comment" hearing on the proposed ordinance. Tvert said he will then begin a signature-gathering drive to put an initiative on the November ballot.

Similar initiatives have been adopted in Seattle and Oakland.

But David Broadwell, an assistant city attorney, said there's still a question whether a policy through an initiated ordinance can be enforced here.

Initiative 100 "clearly related to a law of the city and changed that law," he said. "But this one is obviously quite different in terms of purporting to direct administrative behavior in the executive branch in a very specific way. I don't think we've ever had an initiative quite like this one."

The proposal also calls for the creation of an 11-member Marijuana Policy Review Panel "to assess and report on the effects of this ordinance."

Rocky Mountain News

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

SAFER and NORML continue to fight an uphill battle in the same ineffective way. They won't try changing federal law in the courts, their statewide initiatives continue to fail with the voters, so now they are down to cities. What's next, block by block battles like in Iraq. How many years and how many dollars have these organizations wasted by small thinking and getting small results. When are they going to take some of their money and hire real lobbyists and influence brokers to carry their message to the law makers, just like big oil and defense contractors? What the hell are these guys smoking?