The number of arrests for drug sales/manufacturing, as well as people admitted to and held in prison for drug offences, all fell by roughly a third from 2009 to 2019.
Despite cannabis’ ongoing decriminalization in the U.S., drug arrests are continuing as they have in the past.
Additional nuggets released by the company in the Twitter thread included that while laws are changing, police enforcers appear to be way behind.
Aside from a few exceptions, most findings were positive, such as there being fewer charges and lower incarceration rates for Black people. Evolving drug laws have also resulted in a 62 per cent reduction in prison populations, Pew reports.
More troubling, however, is the finding that drug and alcohol mortality rates in prisons have increased by five per cent and three per cent, respectively.
Drug possession arrests, for their part, barely budged, decreasing by just 0.4 per cent.
There’s also the fact that while marijuana arrests have decreased, other drug arrests have increased, highlighting the racial differences in the types of drugs Black and white people use and are charged with.
To gather these findings, Pew conducted an overview of national data on drug arrests and imprisonment, drug treatment and more. The study concludes that while “shifts in drug enforcement patterns in recent decades have reduced some racial disparities and decreased prison populations, they have done little to mitigate the public health consequences of drug misuse.”
More needs to be done to curb the justice system’s reliance on drug incarcerations and make sure the law treats people fairly and equally, regardless of race or economical status.
The FreshToast.com, a U.S. lifestyle site that contributes lifestyle content and, with their partnership with 600,000 physicians via Skipta, medical marijuana information to The GrowthOp.
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