Oregon Addiction Treatment
Over the past decade, Oregon has experienced a surge in the non-medical use of prescription pain relievers. In 2013 alone, approximately one in every four Oregonians received a prescription for opioid painkillers. With so many of these drugs in circulation, there’s a higher chance of people getting them without a prescription.
Oregon has the highest non-medical use rate of prescription pain relievers in the nation. An estimated 6.4 percent of individuals ages 12 or older use prescription pain killers in Oregon, compared to the nationwide average of 4.6 percent.
Drug addictions commonly treated in Oregon treatment centers involve:
In Oregon, methamphetamine is the most serious threat after prescription painkillers. Mexican drug traffickers smuggle in large amounts of methamphetamine including powder, liquid and crystal meth. Once the meth is within state limits, outlaw motorcycle clubs and street gangs distribute it to dealers. With a spike in methamphetamine-related crimes across neighborhoods, law enforcement agencies have cracked down on drug arrests. Since 2009, arrests related to methamphetamines have more than doubled in Oregon.
Another dangerous drug making its way into Oregon communities is heroin. Like methamphetamine, heroin is often smuggled into the state by Mexican drug traffickers. One of the biggest cities at risk for heroin abuse in Oregon is Portland. The drug can be found in open-air markets, on the streets and in nightclubs. With more groups distributing heroin, it’s difficult for law enforcement agencies to fight back. More than 24 percent of agencies now list heroin as a huge threat to their patrolled area.
Laws Of Oregon Drug Use
Oregon has severe penalties for the possession and distribution of controlled substances. A drug is assigned one of five schedules to determine potential jail sentencing and fines. Schedule I includes substances that have a high risk for dependency and are extremely dangerous. Substances classified as schedule V are considered to have the lowest risk for dependency and are the least harmful.
|Schedule||Substances Included||Potential Sentencing|
|Schedule I||Heroin, LSD, Peyote, Mescaline, Psilocybin||Up to 10 years in jail and $100,000 fine, plus twice the value of any resulting gain of property or money|
|Schedule II||Opium, Cocaine, Methamphetamine||Up to 5 years in jail and $100,000 fine, plus twice the value of any resulting gain of property or money|
|Schedule III||Amphetamine, Depressants, PCP||Up to 1 year in jail and $2,500 fine, plus twice the value of any resulting gain of property or money|
|Schedule IV||Various prescription drugs||Up to 30 days in jail and $500 fine, plus twice the value of any resulting gain of property or money|
|Schedule V||Other less dangerous prescription drugs with a low potency||$250 fine, plus twice the value of any resulting gain of property or money|
If a schedule I, II or III substance is manufactured or delivered within 1,000 feet of a school, offenders will face a felony charge with up to 20 years in jail and a $100,000 fine.
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Marijuana Laws in Oregon
In November 2014, 56 percent of Oregonians approved the Oregon Legalized Marijuana Initiative, Measure 91. The legalization officially took effect on July 1, 2015, allowing adults ages 21 and older to possess up to eight ounces of usable marijuana and four plants. The Oregon Liquor Control Commission will begin approving recreational facility dispensary applications in late 2016. After receiving approval, businesses can start operations in early 2017.
In additional to recreational uses, marijuana also treats medical patients in Oregon. Qualifying conditions for medical marijuana are:
- Alzheimer’s disease
- Chronic pain
- Persistent muscle spasms
- Post-traumatic stress
- Other conditions are subject to approval
Currently, Oregon will operate medical and recreational marijuana businesses separately. However, they may be joined later down the road.
There are several differences between medical and recreational uses of marijuana in Oregon including possession amount, taxes and dispensaries. For example, medical marijuana patients are allowed to possess up to 24 ounces, as well as grow six mature plants and 18 immature seedlings at home.
In January 2016, state officials placed a 25 percent sales tax on recreational marijuana purchased at medical dispensaries. Once recreational dispensaries start operating, the sales tax will be reduced to 17 percent plus a local sales tax of up to 3 percent. Individuals who qualify for medical marijuana will be exempt from paying marijuana taxes.
While both medical and recreational marijuana are legal in Oregon, there are still penalties for possessing more than the allotted amount.
|Marijuana Amount||Legal Penalty||Potential Sentencing|
|1 oz or less||No penalty||No jail time or fines|
|More than 1 – 2 oz||Violation||No jail time, $650 fine|
|More than 2 – 4 oz||Misdemeanor||6 months jail, $2,500 fine|
|More than 4 oz||Misdemeanor||1 year jail, $6,250 fine|
|8 oz or less homegrown||No penalty||No jail time or fines|
|More than 1 – 2 lbs||Misdemeanor||6 months jail, $2,500 fine|
|More than 2 lbs||Misdemeanor||1 year jail, $6,250 fine|
The state has allowed local communities to determine whether or not they want to ban the sales and production of marijuana. If you live in an area that has not approved recreational marijuana, you will face stricter penalties for possession and distribution. Presently, there are 89 cities and counties that have opted to prohibit recreational marijuana in Oregon.
Addiction Treatment Laws in Oregon
Harm reduction laws aim to protect Oregon residents from the negative impacts of substance abuse. Each law addresses the effect of addiction, and provides measures for prevention, treatment and maintaining sobriety. Over the past several decades, Oregon’s harm reduction laws have contributed to lowering the number of drug overdoses and spread of diseases.
Syringe Exchange Program (SEP)
In 1987, Oregon was the first state to offer syringe access as a public health measure. That year, the state legislature passed a law to exclude syringes from the definition of paraphernalia. Clean needles can be obtained in pharmacies, retail outlets, syringe exchange programs (SEPs) and sometimes even vending machines.
By offering access to clean, sterile syringes, Oregon is hoping to reduce needle-sharing among drug users. This will help lessen the spread of diseases such as HIV/AIDS and hepatitis. Oftentimes, local organizations will partner with SEPs to assist those who are looking to overcome an addiction. Services may include low-cost treatment programs, support groups, affordable housing and career workforce solutions.
Oregon High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA) Program
The Oregon High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA) program is specialized in combating statewide drug trafficking efforts. It’s made up of eight federal agencies, three state agencies, 40 local agencies and the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the District of Oregon.
Using state-of-the-art equipment and other technology resources, these organizations work together to fight against drug trafficking efforts. Common goals among programs are:
- Combating money laundering organizations.
- Lessening the availability of drugs.
- Identifying and breaking apart drug trafficking organizations (DTOs).
Intensive Treatment And Recovery Services (ITRS) Program
Oregon’s Intensive Treatment and Recovery Services (ITRS) program began in 2007. The state program keeps parents and dependent children together through regular and intensive outpatient treatment, case management and peer mentoring. It also helps provide sober housing options for families and pregnant women.
Roughly 93 percent of parents who complete Oregon’s Intensive Treatment and Recovery Services program meet the requirements necessary for regaining custody of their children.
ITRS makes it possible for parents to seek treatment for an addiction and start a new life for their family. The program’s services guide individuals along the road to long-term recovery and help them be the best parents possible for their children.
Treatment Centers In Oregon
Every year, approximately 50,000 Oregonians seek treatment for addiction. Oregon has some of the highest rates of individuals who check into residential facilities for intensive treatment.
The Oregon Health Authority spends an estimated $51 million annually on substance abuse treatment. This money is allocated to rehab facilities, support groups, counseling programs and other resources that help combat addiction.
In the mid-1990s, Oregon’s Medicaid program began covering addiction treatment services including:
- Outpatient rehab
- Medication-assisted therapies
- Hospital-based detox
- Residential treatment
Like other states, many of Oregon’s treatment centers have waiting lists. However, the state has various programs and support groups in place to prevent individuals from slipping back into old habits. For example, some community organizations in Portland provide free food and clothing to those who are homeless and struggling with an addiction. It works to get people the help they need in overcoming a substance abuse problem once and for all.
While looking for treatment programs, broaden your search to include both in-state and out-of-state facilities. Sometimes your best recovery option may be farther from home. Several benefits to out-of-state programs are:
- Specialized therapies and activities.
- Personalized amenities based on your preferences.
- State-of-the-art equipment for treatment.
- Longer distance from triggers and negative influences.
Start on your journey to sobriety today. Contact a treatment provider today.