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.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Mexico: Let Up On Users Target Cartels

The Denver Post

MEXICO CITY — Could Mexican cities become Latin Amsterdams, flooded by drug users seeking penalty-free tokes and toots? That is the fear, if somewhat overstated, of some Mexican officials, especially in northern border states that serve as a mecca for underage American drinkers.

The Mexican legislature has voted quietly to decriminalize the possession of small amounts of pot, cocaine, methamphetamine and other drugs, an effort that in the past has proved highly controversial.

There has been less protest this time around, in part because there hasn't been much publicity.

Some critics have suggested that easing the punishment on drug possession sends the wrong message at a time when President Felipe Calderon is waging a bloody war on major narcotics traffickers. The battle between law enforcement and drug suspects has resulted in more than 11,000 deaths in the past 2 1/2 years.

But it was Calderon himself who proposed the decriminalization legislation.

His reasoning: It makes sense to distinguish between small-time users and big-time dealers, while retargeting major crime-fighting resources away from the former and toward the latter and their drug-lord bosses.

"The important thing is . . . that consumers are not treated as criminals," said Rafael Ruiz Mena, secretary general of the National Institute of Penal Sciences. "It is a public health problem, not a penal problem."

The legislation was approved at the height of a swine-flu outbreak in Mexico that dominated the public's, and the world's, attention.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Most people no the difference between a person using drugs and a rotten criminal trying to get rich selling and distributing the stuff. Legalize it and tax it, the criminals go away. DJW