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, December 04, 2009

Ohio To Switch To One Drug Lethal Injection

Columbus Dispatch

Ohio will switch to a single drug instead of a three-drug cocktail in its new execution procedure, according to documents filed in federal court this morning.
Executions will use a single drug, thiopental sodium, "in an amount sufficient to cause death," Attorney General Richard Cordray's office said in filing in U.S. District Court in Columbus. The drug is an anesthetic.
The new procedure will be in place by Nov 30.
The new procedure is similar to one used in euthanizing pets a massive dose of an anesthetic. The drug is also sometimes used in medically-induced comas.
Ohio will be the first state in the U.S. to use the one-drug procedure.
The state filing also listed a new backup procedure, if the first one doesn't work or can't be used.
The backup method involves an injection with a needle into a large muscle such as the arm or upper thigh.   It was described as "much like a flu shot." One of the drugs to be used is Dilaudid, a commonly used painkiller.
"I have full confidence that this protocol will allow my staff the ability to fulfill our legally mandated obligation in carrying out the execution process for the state of Ohio," said Terry Collins, director of the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction.
Department of Rehabilitation and Correction officials announced the new execution procedures this afternoon. The state has been considering a major overhaul of lethal injection procedures since problems forced a halt in the Sept. 15 execution of Romell Broom of Cleveland.
It was the first time in modern U.S. history that an execution had to be abandoned after it was started.
State officials have been consulting with Dr. Mark Dershwitz, a University of Massachusetts professor of anesthesiology, in developing a new process.
Ohio would become the first state to make major changes in a three-drug execution process that was essentially copied by 35 states from Oklahoma, where it was developed by an anesthesiologist in 1977.

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