© 2020 Texas Public Radio
Real. Reliable. Texas Public Radio.
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00
0:00
Available On Air Stations

The Source: Is It Time To Decriminalize Illegal Drugs?

rndr_670x377.jpg
Wikimedia Commons
/

Someone gets busted for drug possession every 25 seconds in the U.S., but the Human Rights Watch and the American Civil Liberties Union say enforcement isn’t paying off.

Someone gets busted for drug possession every 25 seconds in the U.S., but the Human Rights Watch and the American Civil Liberties Union say enforcement isn’t paying off.

Their recent report is the culmination of a yearlong investigation that focused on the states of Texas, Louisiana, New York and Florida. The groups say criminalizing the personal use and possession of drugs results in “devastating harm,” and states and the federal government need to decriminalize such low-level offenses.

Is it time to decriminalize personal drug use and possession? Can the criminal justice model for drugs be replaced with a health one, instead?

Guests: 

Tess Borden, author of the report "Every 25 Seconds: The Human Toll of Criminalizing Drug Use in the United States" and Neier Fellow at the ACLU and Human Rights Watch 

Michael Gilbert, executive director of the National Association of Community and Restorative Justice and associate professor in the Department of Criminal Justice at the University of Texas at San Antonio