------------------------------------------------------------------- Haze of Uncertainty (The Daily Courier, in Grants Pass, Oregon, says the state's new law that allows the use of marijuana for medicinal purposes is still embroiled in a . . . haze of uncertainty. The Dubs Cancer Center at the Rogue Valley Medical Center, for example, is waiting for the Oregon Medical Association to release guidelines in the spring.) Date: Wed, 20 Jan 1999 15:37:15 -0800 From: email@example.com (MAPNews) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: MN: US OR: MMJ: Haze of Uncertainty Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Olafur Brentmar Pubdate: Sat, 16 Jan 1999 Source: Grants Pass Daily Courier Contact: email@example.com Page: Front + 3A Author: Patricia Snyder of the Daily Courier HAZE OF UNCERTAINTY Oregon's Controversial Law That Allows The Use Of Marijuana For Medicinal Purposes Is Still Embroiled In A ... Haze Of Uncertainty Sheryl Lee smokes more marijuana than she used to. Until recent months, the Williams woman and her live-in companion, Alan Venet, said they used the drug mostly in the evenings as part of their religion. "It focuses your being," Venet said, similar to yoga and meditation. About a year ago, Lee experienced her first seizure. She turned to doctors, who prescribed medication to prevent the seizures for which they found no specific cause, she said. Now, Lee reaches for the pot pipe first thing in the morning so that she can keep down that medicine, and one in the afternoon so she can work up an appetite. Oregonians, including Lee, who use marijuana as medicine could breathe easier after a voter-passed measure allowing such use took effect on Dec. 3. However, a haze of uncertainty and fear clings to the new, controversial law. Lee even asked a lawyer to review it to make sure she followed it correctly. "I don't want to be treated like a criminal," she said. "I'm not a criminal." She now keeps copies of her medical records and the law with her, in addition to certified proof that she mailed the information to the stat's registry office. Discussing medicinal marijuana was an uncomfortable subject, she recalled. "My poor doctor just acted like I stuck him with a pin when I asked him about it," she said. Local medical providers appear to be approaching the issue with extreme caution - or avoiding it altogether. The Dubs Cancer Center at the Rogue Valley Medical Center, for example, is waiting for the Oregon Medical Association to release guidelines in the spring. Cancer symptoms are among those that can be legally treated with marijuana under the new law. Patients with glaucoma - another condition the law lists - shouldn't expect a recommendation from either the Grants Pass ophthalmology clinics. Both have policies against recommending the drug. "There's better stuff out there," said Dr. Michael Hoyt of the Medical Eye Center. While marijuana might be helpful for pain or nausea, legal medications do a better job of reducing eye pressure and have minimal side effects, he said. Dr. Russ Leavitt with Cascade Eye Care agreed that those who suffer from something other than glaucoma could find marijuana use helpful. But he's told the few patients who asked him for a recommendation that he doesn't believe it has a place in ophthalmology among techniques ranging from prescription medication to surgery. Some medical providers refused to comment on the new law, nervous about the implications of federal legal challenges of California pot clubs. Several states have recently passed medicinal marijuana laws, adding to the legal uncertainty because marijuana strictly an outlaw drug according to the federal government. Oregon state officials do not advise people about where to obtain marijuana, because they don't want to violate federal law, said Dr. Grant Higginson, state health officer with the Oregon Health Division. "People think that it's a prescription or that the Health Division is going to be distributing it or that there's going to be places set up where they can go and smoke," he added. "None of that is true." The only legal ways for medicinal users to obtain marijuana is to grow it themselves - within the set limits - or to get it free from someone who can legally grow it, said Peter Cogswell, spokesman for the Oregon Department of Justice. "The law doesn't allow you to buy it or for it to be sold to you," he said. Lee sees this situation as a weakness of the system. She doesn't grow her own, but she's considering an outdoor crop. One worry is that others might steal the plants. Marijuana isn't the problem some people fear, she said. She's smoked it for 20 years, she said, and judging from the number of people to use it, society would be battling more problems if it were as dangerous as some claim it is. Instead, she said, enforcement should focus on drugs like cocaine and heroin. She's seen lives deteriorate because of those. "It's life-threatening, although you don't die," she said. "Your life goes away." Lee isn't concerned about a moral or social stigma attached to her because of marijuana use. "I'm not really worried about your perception of what I do," she said Those who know her understand why she uses marijuana, she explained Strangers likely wouldn't ask her about it because they wouldn't be aware she even uses it. But others have been less discrete than Lee. The issue of public consumption arose on New Year's Eve in a Newport restaurant, when the manager told a man he couldn't light up there. Mike Assenberg of Waldport claimed federal law allows consumption of medication anywhere and state law can't contradict that. But Oregon's law states that medical marijuana users aren't exempt from laws that prohibit use in a public place or in public view. The matter is currently under legal review. Employers are also asking questions. The law states a business isn't expected to accommodate medical use in the work place. Workers seeking answers are told the law is pretty clear on that point, said Geoff Sugerman, spokesman for the group Oregonians for Medical Rights, which supported the new law. He recommends first visiting the doctor and securing a recommendation, then taking it to the boss. "I think in most cases, employers will be compassionate for their employees," he said. Local law enforcement officials say they haven't experienced a rash of problems related to medical marijuana use. In one case, state police troopers even asked about the defense while preparing marijuana possession charges, according to OSP Sgt. Richard Kuehmichel. "The guy said to the effect of, 'Heck no, anybody that claims that is just plain lying. You smoke dope to smoke dope,'" he said with a chuckle. Still, Kuehmichel isn't laughing when it comes to speculation about recreational users who might abuse the law by claiming a medical need. Like Lee's stance that strangers wouldn't know she used marijuana medicinally, some officers believe the matter will likely remain in smoky back rooms of people's homes. Use will occur in private, explained Sgt Jim Schlegel of Grants Pass Department of Public Safety. "Chances are we're not going to be in those homes," he said. Even if questions are raised, those legitimately under the law will cooperate with questions, said Lt. Brian Anderson of the Josephine County Sheriff's Office. "Those who really need it, I think they're going to be up front when you contact them," he said.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Applications Coming In From Around The State (The Daily Courier, in Grants Pass, Oregon, says the state isn't issuing medical marijuana registration cards yet, since the Oregon Medical Marijuana Act doesn't require the state Health Division to iron out its procedures until May 1, but several people have already applied. The newspaper then provides some helpful information to patients on how to submit applications for registration cards.) Date: Wed, 20 Jan 1999 17:11:47 -0800 From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) To: email@example.com Subject: MN: US OR: MMJ: Applications Coming In From Around The State Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Olafur Brentmar Pubdate: Sat, 16 Jan 1999 Source: Grants Pass Daily Courier Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Page: Front Author: Patricia Snyder of the Daily Courier APPLICATIONS COMING IN FROM AROUND THE STATE The state isn't issuing medical marijuana registration cards yet, but several people have applied. Dr. Grant Higginson, state health officer, recommended submitting applications as soon as possible, even though the Oregon Health Division has until May 1 to issue the cards. "As soon as the registration system is up and running we'll start processing them," he said. The state will verify information in the applications, but that doesn't mean it will hunt down users and perform exams, he said. "I don't think the act gives us the authority to go in and question physician judgment," Higginson said. Since doctors determine a patient's medical condition, those wishing to apply should visit their physician for documentation. "They also need the note to say that they may benefit from the medical use of marijuana," he said. The recommendation must come from an Oregon licensed physician. Send the medical information and the physician recommendation, along with the doctor's name, address and telephone number, in a packet that includes the name, address and birth date of the applicant. Someone who wants to designate a primary care-giver should include that name and address. All information should be sent to: Dr. Grant Higginson, state health officer, Oregon Health Division, 800 N.E. Oregon St. Number 925, Portland, OR 97232. Applicants should keep their own copy of the documentation, Higginson added. Call the Health Division at (503) 731-4000 for information. The state does not provide a list of physicians willing to make a recommendation, but Higginson said some are willing to do so. "We have gotten those written notifications from a number of physicians from a number of different parts of the state," he said, although he didn't have specific locations. No figure were available on the number of people who have applied. Applications are locked away until the registration system is activated. Oregonians for Medical Rights, an organization that championed passage of the medical marijuana law approved by voters last November, has fielded about 350 requests for information about the law. It offers a toll-free number, (877) 600-6767.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Law Enforcement Group Drafting Legislation To Revise Marijuana Law (The Daily Courier, in Grants Pass, Oregon, notes the Oregon Association of Chiefs of Police is drafting legislation to gut Measure 67, the medical marijuana initiative voters approved in November. Follow these links to the Oregon legislature's web sites for the email addresses of your state senator and representative - and please send a brief protest note.) From: email@example.com Date: Wed, 20 Jan 1999 19:41:19 -0800 (PST) Subject: DPFOR: DND: US OR: MMJ: Law Enforcement Group Drafting Legislation To Revise To: DPFOR@drugsense.org Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: DrugSense http://www.drugsense.org/ Newshawk: Olafur Brentmar Pubdate: Sat, 16 Jan 1999 Source: Grants Pass Daily Courier Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Page: 3A Author: Patricia Snyder of the Daily Courier LAW ENFORCEMENT GROUP DRAFTING LEGISLATION TO REVISE MARIJUANA LAW Law enforcement officials are planning to target a voter-passed law legalizing the medicinal use of marijuana. The Oregon Association of Chiefs of Police is drafting legislation to revise Measure 67, which voters approved in November, said Kevin Campbell, association executive. "We want to respect the will of the people and what their intent was," he said. The association wants to clean up the wording to provide clearer guidance, he said. Rep. Kevin Mannix, R-Salem, said he is willing to sponsor the legislation to revise the law. Mannix opposed Measure 67 before the election but said the reason he is willing to propose changes to the Legislature is because of technical problems caused by a lack of legal review prior to public vote. "Now that it's on the books, I just think we need to make sure the language is nice and tight," he said. Campbell cited three main concerns: evidence, care-givers and the registration process. The law requires police return evidence to non-criminal users in the same condition as it was seized. That could be feasible with pipes and grow lamps but could conflict with federal law in terms of maintaining and returning plants, he said. It also creates a potential point of dispute regarding the maintenance of plant health, and the law would be better if the part about plants was taken out altogether, he said. Police also worry about allowing a user to designate a care-giver. "They could potentially be a care-giver for 50 people," he said, and that would lead to large growing operations. The association would also like to eliminate the "affirmative defense" aspect, which allows suspects to claim they intend to or were in the process of applying for a state-issued registration card. Rather, he said, medicinal marijuana registration should be handled more like gun permits - use wouldn't be allowed without a permit in hand. That would eliminate officer confusion when they encounter someone growing or using marijuana, he said.
------------------------------------------------------------------- State approves plan to employ prison inmates (The Oregonian says the state Prison Industries Board, trying to fulfill Measure 17's mandate to provide full employment to all inmates, finalized two contracts Friday that will supposedly provide private-sector work to 65 prisoners. Research Data Design Inc. of Portland agreed to use a minimum of 6,000 hours of inmate labor a month to staff a portion of a new telemarketing center under construction at the Snake River Correctional Institution in Ontario. Under the second contract, Acorn Engineering Co., the nation's largest supplier of prison plumbing fixtures, will sell unfinished stainless steel toilets and sinks to the Corrections Department. Inmates will assemble and weld the fixtures, which will be used in four new Oregon prisons slated for construction. Only about 60 percent of eligible inmates now work full time.) The Oregonian Contact: email@example.com 1320 SW Broadway Portland, OR 97201 Fax: 503-294-4193 Website: http://www.oregonlive.com/ Forum: http://forums.oregonlive.com/ State approves plan to employ prison inmates * The Prison Industries Board, following the Measure 17 mandate, seals two contracts for assigning private-sector work to 65 prisoners Saturday, January 16 1999 By Michelle Roberts of The Oregonian staff As the 70th Legislature renews debate over whether state inmates should compete with taxpayers for jobs, the Prison Industries Board on Friday approved plans to employ at least 65 inmates in private-sector work. The board's approval sealed two contracts that would allow Oregon prisoners to conduct telephone surveys for a Portland-based market research firm and to assemble toilets and sinks for a Los Angeles manufacturer. The contracts were approved amid mounting criticism that the state's prison-work law is forcing law-abiding Oregonians out of jobs. "No one will be laid off because these jobs are coming into the prison system," said Jerry W. Gardner, private partnership manager for Inside Oregon Enterprises, the business arm of the Oregon Department of Corrections' Inmate Work Programs. In 1994, voters passed Ballot Measure 17 by 3-to-1. The measure amended the Oregon Constitution to require every inmate to work a 40-hour week. Gov. John Kitzhaber sparked debate in December when he proposed slashing financing for the program until the Legislature addresses how much and for how long the measure should be subsidized. Kitzhaber also expressed concern that inmate work was hurting businesses by creating competition for jobs. The move to cut financing will force the Legislature to discuss how the program should be implemented and at what expense. Creating inmate work in Oregon has required a combination of significant general-fund support -- $34 million by the end of the budget biennium -- and the aggressive pursuit of private partnerships and contracts. Kitzhaber, a member of the board that approved Friday's contracts, said he is working on a measure that will "change some aspects" of the inmate work law. He said Friday he is not hostile to the intent of Measure 17 but that the law needs clarification. State Rep. Kevin Mannix, R-Salem, who sponsored the measure in 1994 as a state senator, has said he is poised to fight the governor's proposed budget. Mannix, chairman of the Criminal Law Subcommittee of the House Judiciary Committee, said he will search for ways the state can use inmate labor, including reforestation and salmon recovery efforts. Because of limited job opportunities, only about 60 percent of the eligible inmates work full time. State government provides about three-fourths of the inmate work done in Oregon. But with the inmate population expected to swell to more than 14,000 in the next decade, there aren't enough jobs to employ all inmates through state government alone. So the inmate work program has turned to private industry to make up the difference, receiving increasing criticism along the way. In the contracts approved Friday, Research Data Design Inc. of Portland has agreed to use a minimum of 6,000 hours of inmate labor a month to staff a portion of a new call center under construction at the Snake River Correctional Institution in Ontario. The company plans to use about 50 medium-security inmates to conduct consumer surveys beginning in mid-March. The Oregon Department of Corrections will spend about $1.16 million on the 200-seat call center at SRCI, the state's largest prison with more than 2,000 inmates. Because the Research Data Design contract would fill only 15 percent of the facility, the department plans to hire an outside firm to recruit additional businesses willing to use inmates for other call-center jobs. Under the second contract, Acorn Engineering Co., the nation's largest supplier of prison plumbing fixtures, will sell unfinished stainless steel toilets and sinks to the Corrections Department. Inmates will assemble and weld the fixtures, which will be used in four new Oregon prisons slated for construction. The deal is expected to employ 15 inmates and use 14,400 hours of inmate labor over the next several years. The Corrections Department has developed private partnerships with four companies. Inmates produce and market the popular Prison Blues line of clothing sewn at the Eastern Oregon Correctional Institution in Pendleton. Inmates also produce wooden pallets for a Salem company and assemble cell doors and security windows for a Minnesota business. Another business is waiting for the necessary permits to build a facility on prison property where inmates can produce concrete building panels.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Police arrest gang violence suspects (The Oregonian says police from the Portland Gang Enforcement Team and Youth Gun Anti-Violence Task Force surrounded the Rodeway Inn in Vancouver, Washington, for hours Friday before they took seven suspects into custody and seized a cache of weapons. Police believe the suspects are connected to two recent gang-related shootings and the seizure of 3 1/2 ounces of crack cocaine in North Portland. The men, from Anchorage, Alaska, had been feuding with members of a Portland gang called the "Flips.") The Oregonian Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org 1320 SW Broadway Portland, OR 97201 Fax: 503-294-4193 Website: http://www.oregonlive.com/ Forum: http://forums.oregonlive.com/ Police arrest gang violence suspects * Seven individuals are taken into custody in connection with two recent gang-related shootings in North Portland Saturday, January 16 1999 By Maxine Bernstein of The Oregonian staff Portland police Friday located a cache of weapons and took seven suspects into custody at a motel after trailing several men who officers suspect were responsible for two recent gang-related shootings in North Portland. The men, from Anchorage, Alaska, fled Portland across the Interstate 205 bridge and were staying in three rooms at the Rodeway Inn in Vancouver, Wash., police said. Police from the Gang Enforcement Team and Youth Gun Anti-Violence Task Force surrounded the motel for hours, watching suspects late Thursday and early Friday. In the pre-dawn hours Friday, officers stopped two men as they walked out of a nearby Shari's Restaurant. They later raided three motel rooms and searched three vehicles parked in the Rodeway Inn lot, Lt. Steven Hollingsworth said. Eleven guns, including a 37mm gun with an extended barrel that shoots flares, were found in the trunk of a silver Oldsmobile Cutlass. A rented Chevy Blazer, with its rear window shot out, was parked alongside it. One gun was taken from a hotel room. The men from Alaska had been feuding with members of a gang called the "Flips." "This group of guys has been in Portland a relatively short time," said Officer William Goff of the Portland Gang Enforcement Team. "Within a week, they've done two shootings." The violence began with a brawl Jan. 8 on North Interstate Avenue. That led to a drive-by shooting the same day on the 1400 block of North Baldwin Avenue about 5 p.m. Police found 31 spent 9mm shell casings outside 1420 N. Baldwin Ave., but no one was hit. The investigation led to a police search of a home at 1611 N. Colfax St. on Jan. 9. Police seized 3 1/2 ounces of crack cocaine, $18,000 in suspected drug-profit money, two 9mm handguns and a .22-caliber handgun. They also seized videotapes and used them to identify suspects connected to the shooting. The second shooting occurred about 4 p.m. Thursday on the 1200 block of North Watts Street. Jason Perry, 23, was shot in the left elbow and right hand and was in fair condition Friday at Legacy Emanuel Hospital and Health Center. Peter Foe Liulama, 18, and Justin Benson, age unknown, were accused of attempted murder. Five others faced drug charges Friday. The Clark County Sheriff's Office, Vancouver police and the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms assisted Portland police.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Making I-692 Work (A staff editorial in the Seattle Times says Pierce County Prosecutor John Ladenburg held up his end of Initiative 692, Washington state's new medical-marijuana law, when he announced this week he would not charge a blind AIDS patient and his mom after they were arrested for growing three marijuana plants in their home. Unfortunately, it is I-692's chief sponsor, Dr. Rob Killian, who flunked the first test of the law by not providing documentation to his patient.)Date: Sat, 16 Jan 1999 14:15:09 -0800 From: email@example.com (MAPNews) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: MN: US WA: MMJ: Editorial: Making I-692 Work Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: John Smith Source: Seattle Times (WA) Copyright: 1999 The Seattle Times Company Website: http://www.seattletimes.com/ Contact: email@example.com Pubdate: Sat, 16 Jan 1999 MAKING I-692 WORK AN overwhelming majority of voters sent law enforcement a loud message last November when they approved Initiative 692, the medical marijuana measure: Treat sick patients with compassion. At the same time, voters sent a clear message to patients who use medical marijuana: Get your papers in order and comply fully with the law. Pierce County Prosecutor John Ladenburg held up his end of the bargain this week when he announced he would not charge a blind AIDS patient and his mom after they were arrested for growing three marijuana plants in their home. Unfortunately, it is I-692's chief sponsor, Dr. Rob Killian, who flunked in this first test case of the law. I-692 requires patients and their primary caregivers to show "valid documentation for any law enforcement official who questions the patient regarding his medical use of marijuana." Not just any piece of paper; it's spelled out quite plainly in the law that valid documentation means "a statement signed by a qualifying patient's physician or a copy of the qualifying patient's pertinent medical records." Neither the Tacoma AIDS patient, Kelly Grubbs, nor his caretaker and mother, Tracy Morgan, had the proper papers when authorities came to their home after Grubbs' emergency medical beeper was accidentally set off two weeks ago. Grubbs' physician? Dr. Rob Killian. Killian notes that he had discussed medical marijuana with Grubbs; he criticized Tacoma police for proceeding with the arrest and said the cops should have called him. But there's nothing in I-692 that makes oral consultation an acceptable form of valid documentation. Physicians who want to make the law work are right to worry about the threat of federal criminal prosecution, which still hangs overhead. All the more reason to work with law-enforcement agencies to come up with a mutually acceptable standard form that protects doctors and meets the patient-documentation mandate of I-692. The police shouldn't have to play medical sleuths or mind-readers.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Sixteenth California News Summary (According to UPI, Los Angeles City Attorney Jim Hahn said he will begin enforcing a new state law immediately that allows him to step in and evict "drug" users and dealers when landlords fail to do so. The City Council unanimously approved a plan today to fund Hahn's new Narcotics Eviction Team. It's not clear whether the standard is a conviction, indictment, or merely an accusation.)Date: Sat, 16 Jan 1999 09:19:36 -0800 From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) To: email@example.com Subject: MN: US CA: Wire: Sixteenth California News Summary Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: General Pulaski Pubdate: Sat, 16 Jan 1999 Source: United Press International Copyright: 1999 United Press International SIXTEENTH CALIFORNIA NEWS SUMMARY Drug dealers, users can be evicted under new state law LOS ANGELES, Jan. 15 (UPI) - Los Angeles City Attorney Jim Hahn said he will immediately begin enforcing a new state law that allows him to step in and evict drug dealers and users when landlords fail to take action to remedy drug-related nuisance problems. The City Council unanimously approved a plan today to fund Hahn's new Narcotics Eviction Team. Hahn says the law allows city prosecutors to step in when landlords either lack the will or feel too threatened to handle the evictions themselves.
------------------------------------------------------------------- New Attorney General Concentrates On Civil Rights (According to the San Francisco Examiner, Bill Lockyer, the newly elected Democrat, said Friday on the anniversary of Martin Luther King's birthday that he will double the budget and staff devoted to combating civil rights violations in California. One thing he won't be doing, he added, is look for ways to prosecute people who distribute marijuana under the state's medical marijuana provision.) Date: Mon, 18 Jan 1999 15:01:38 -0800 From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) To: email@example.com Subject: MN: US CA: New Attorney General Concentrates On Civil Rights Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: firstname.lastname@example.org (Frank S. World) Pubdate: Jan. 16, 1999 Source: San Francisco Examiner (CA) Copyright: 1999 San Francisco Examiner Website: http://www.examiner.com/ Forum: http://examiner.com/cgi-bin/WebX Contact: email@example.com Author: Katherine Seligman NEW ATTORNEY GENERAL CONCENTRATES ON CIVIL RIGHTS Lockyer doubles division's staff; boasts how he voted for medical marijuana On the anniversary of Martin Luther King's birthday, Attorney General Bill Lockyer said Friday he will double the budget and staff devoted to combating civil rights violations. Lockyer said he is creating a special civil rights section that will aggressively enforce laws banning discrimination in housing, employment and promotion and prosecute hate crimes. He also said he will set up regional civil rights commissions where local leaders can meet to discuss their concerns and then funnel them to his office. "The status of civil rights enforcement is being elevated" after years of being treated as "an afterthought," Lockyer said at a press conference held in front of a mural of Cesar Chavez at the Mission District elementary school that bears the labor leader's name. One thing he won't be doing, he added, is looking for ways to prosecute people who distribute marijuana under the state's medical marijuana provision. Unlike his predecessor, Republican Dan Lungren, Lockyer said he voted for Proposition 215 and supports the controversial law. "If we can give terminally ill people morphine, it seems we should be able to give them this medicine," he said. A welcome change As Lockyer announced his five-part civil rights plan, he was accompanied by more than a dozen civil rights activists and civic leaders, including San Francisco Fire Chief Bob Demmons, who was one of two African Americans when he joined the department in 1974. Lockyer said the plan includes a commitment to ensure diversity within the state's Department of Justice. California's recent ban on affirmative action will not preclude strong efforts to recruit underrepresented groups, he said. His plan was applauded by civil rights activists as a "major turnaround" in the attorney general's office. "This is a real turning point," said Herbert Yamanishi, national director of the Japanese American Citizens League, who attended the press conference. "We're focusing on civil rights instead of civil wrongs. It will be the end of the wedge issue. At least now we'll have an opportunity to have the laws work well." Beth Parker, program director of Equal Rights Advocates, said she welcomes an attorney general who's not against civil rights interests. "He's already met with the civil rights community a month ago and it's the first time an attorney general has met with us instead of litigating against us," Parker said. Beefing up department Under his plan, the Department of Justice will add three attorneys to the civil rights section, bringing the total to six, and create two positions for special investigators. The additions will make the civil rights section equal to or larger than divisions in other populous states. New York, New Jersey and Florida already have six attorneys, according to statistics provided by Lockyer's office. The staff will face new responsibilities, including filing "friend of the court" briefs in important state and federal appellate court cases, doing more community outreach and public education to prevent discrimination, and responding "in a timely manner" to alleged violation of state civil rights laws. Lockyer said he is considering taking action on a ruling this week by the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals backing the right of landlords to deny housing to unmarried couples for religious reasons. He said he has contacted attorneys general in other Western states to discuss a possible request for further review. Lockyer named Deputy Attorney General Louis Verdugo, a 22-year veteran of the Department of Justice, to head the new Civil Rights Enforcement Section. Verdugo said the added staff will help reduce the backlog of cases in the section. The new regional civil rights commissions created by the attorney general's office will be comprised of a cross section of consumer advocates, civil rights organizations, business leaders, academics, prosecutors and law enforcement officials, Lockyer said.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Failed Drug Policies And The Heroin Glut (A letter to the editor of the San Francisco Chronicle says increased heroin use isn't limited to "young, middle- and upper-middle class-kids like the 21-year-old son of blues rocker Boz Scaggs." The heroin glut is global and occurring despite record budgets for such never-proven concepts as "drug Interdiction." It's another convincing indicator of the failure of prohibition.) Date: Sat, 16 Jan 1999 08:51:35 -0800 From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) To: email@example.com Subject: MN: US CA: PUB LTE: Failed Drug Policies And The Heroin Glut Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: firstname.lastname@example.org (Frank S. World) Pubdate: Sat, 16 Jan 1999 Source: San Francisco Chronicle (CA) Copyright: 1999 San Francisco Chronicle Website: http://www.sfgate.com/chronicle/ Forum: http://www.sfgate.com/conferences/ Contact: email@example.com Author: Tom O'Connell, M.D. FAILED DRUG POLICIES AND THE HEROIN GLUT Editor -- Last week, The Chronicle reported breathlessly on the phenomenon of increased heroin use by the ``young, middle- and upper-middle class-kids like the 21-year-old son of blues rocker Boz Scaggs'' (``Young, Rich And Strung Out,'' Chronicle, January 9). They also reported that the price of heroin in the Bay Area has fallen so dramatically that a heroin high is not much more expensive than ``a six-pack of beer.'' What they failed to report is that the heroin glut isn't limited to the Bay Area, or even the United States; it's global and occurring despite record budgets for such never-proven concepts as ``drug interdiction'' and ``source country control,'' or more recently appropriated extra billions to Madison Avenue for ``demand reduction'' ads. Heroin overdose deaths have been setting records from Sydney to Glasgow and points in between, including Vancouver. B.C., and Plano, Texas, as well as here in San Francisco. The glut should be seen as another convincing indicator of the failure of prohibition; instead it will be cited by demagogues in Washington as an urgent reason for taxpayers to pour more billions down the drug war rat-hole, for beefed-up police forces to send more poor people to prison, and for newspapers like The Chronicle to write more uncritical drug scare stories -- free advertising for the lucrative criminal market created by a witless policy. TOM O'CONNELL, M.D. San Mateo
------------------------------------------------------------------- Police Arrest Miami Coach (The Tulsa World says Rusty Dean Roark, a first-year teacher and wrestling coach at Miami High School, in Miami, Oklahoma, was arrested at the school with a student 2 a.m. Friday and charged with possession of a controlled substance - methamphetamine - on school grounds, possession of marijuana, possession of drug paraphernalia and possession of a weapon while in commission of a felony.) Date: Sat, 23 Jan 1999 10:50:23 -0800 From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) To: email@example.com Subject: MN: US OK: Police Arrest Miami Coach Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Michael Pearson (firstname.lastname@example.org) Source: Tulsa World (OK) Copyright: 1999, World Publishing Co. Website: http://www.tulsaworld.com/ Contact: email@example.com Pubdate: Sat, 16 Jan 1999 Author: Michael Smith, World Staff Writer POLICE ARREST MIAMI COACH Authorities Found A Loaded Gun, Drugs And Drug Paraphernalia. MIAMI, Okla. -- A teacher who is the wrestling coach for Miami High School was arrested at the school early Friday on multiple drug complaints, police said. Rusty Dean Roark, 30, of Grove was arrested on complaints of possession of a controlled substance on school grounds, possession of marijuana, possession of drug paraphernalia and possession of a weapon while in commission of a felony, Miami Police Chief Gary Anderson said. Roark was a first-year instructor at the school, where he was the head wrestling coach, an assistant football coach and a physical education teacher. Anderson said an officer was patrolling the school parking lot about 2 a.m. when he saw a car with a Kansas license plate in the lot and spotted a man who went inside the school. The officer shined a flashlight inside the car and saw a long gun and what appeared to be drug paraphernalia, reports show. ``They patrol there all the time, so to see this at 2 a.m. was very out of the ordinary,'' Anderson said. The officer confronted Roark -- who was with a student and said they were cleaning up after a wrestling match held hours earlier -- and received permission to search the car, Assistant District Attorney Fred DeMier said. Inside the vehicle, the officer found a test tube that allegedly had methamphetamine residue on it and a pipe that allegedly had marijuana residue, he said. Roark told the officer that he had found the items at the school that day, DeMier said. The officer also found a loaded shotgun inside the car, he said. When Roark was being booked at the Ottawa County Jail, officers reportedly found a packet of methamphetamine in his wallet and another test tube concealed inside his clothing. Roark was released on $7,000 bail and will be arraigned when the courthouse reopens on Tuesday, jail records show. There was no answer at Roark's home telephone. ``I'm not going to react to it until I really know what happened,'' Principal Mike Reece said, declin ing to discuss Roark's job status. School Superintendent Dean Hughes said he was surprised by the arrest. On Friday afternoon he was discussing with the school's attorney what discipline Roark could face. The teacher was working on a temporary contract after being a wrestling coach and teacher in Anderson, Mo., for the last two years. Larry Clay, the father of one of the school's wrestlers, said Roark came into a rebuilding process for the Miami wrestling team but was fielding a full squad and allowing freshmen, such as his son, Chris Clay, to wrestle for the first time in several years. ``It's got to be disappointing for the kids. My son felt like Coach Roark was giving them a chance and working with them,'' he said. ``From a parent's standpoint, we thought the wrestling squad was going in a different direction, so it's a shame. ``I feel for Coach Roark. But according to what he had on him, I don't want my son around that.'' DeMier said he had not found Roark to have a criminal record.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Advocates On Both Sides Gear Up For Medical Marijuana Battle Here (The Daily Herald, in Arlington Heights, Illinois, says the Illinois Drug Education Alliance is launching a campaign today to block attempts to bring medical marijuana to Illinois. They also are working to repeal a 1978 law that allows marijuana to be used for research in Illinois. Judy Kreamer, a past president of the group, proved that marijuana can make people who don't use it insane, saying "People can get marijuana to treat athlete's foot," without offering a shred of evidence.) Date: Sat, 16 Jan 1999 14:15:07 -0800 From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) To: email@example.com Subject: MN: US IL: Advocates On Both Sides Gear Up For Medical Marijuana Battle Here Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Steve Young Source: Daily Herald (IL) Copyright: 1998 The Daily Herald Company Website: http://www.dailyherald.com/ Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Pubdate: Sat, 16 Jan 1998 Author: TRAVIS AKIN ADVOCATES ON BOTH SIDES GEAR UP FOR MEDICAL MARIJUANA BATTLE HERE SPRINGFIELD - Legalization of medical marijuana in western states last year has left suburban drug education advocates fearful that Illinois will become a target for similar initiatives. The Illinois Drug Education Alliance, based in Naperville, is launching a campaign beginning with a workshop for its members in downstate Bloomington today to weigh strategies to block attempts to bring medical marijuana to Illinois. They plan more workshops statewide later this year. They also are working to work to repeal a 1978 law that allows marijuana to be used for research in Illinois. IDEA is concerned because last year Alaska, Arizona, Nevada, Oregon and Washington had medical marijuana initiatives on the ballot - and all five passed. It is now legal in all of those states to possess and grow marijuana in varying amounts for medical purposes. "We don't want to get caught," said Naperville resident Joyce Lohrentz, president of IDEA. "So we are trying to set an agenda." Americans for Medical Rights, which emerged as the foremost proponent of medical marijuana, is making plans to begin campaigns in Illinois and other Midwestern states. The group says certain patients benefit from medical qualities in the drug, such as alleviating pain and stimulating the appetites of cancer patients. Opponents contend that is just an excuse to allow marijuana use. But until a definite plan is introduced in the General Assembly, lawmakers such as state Rep. Rosemary Mulligan, a Republican from Des Plaines, want to wait before making a judgment on the issue. "I would have to keep an open mind and listen to the doctors and the pharmacists and see what is being proposed," Mulligan said. Forming a definite plan for bringing medical marijuana to Midwest states such as Illinois is the ultimate goal of the Americans for Medical Rights, said Dave Fratello, the group's communications director. He said the California-based group hopes to get the federal government to change its position on medical marijuana by passing referendums in as many states as possible. Fratello said passing a medical marijuana law in Illinois is difficult because the General Assembly would have to approve a referendum before it could reach the ballot or pro-medical marijuana groups would have to get 500,000 signatures. But that does not mean that his organization has not ruled out Illinois. They are looking to see if there is a feasible way to build support in the General Assembly. No timetable for Illinois has been set. The anti-drug alliance based in Naperville, though, is wary of the consequences of laws allowing marijuana use. Judy Kreamer, a past group president, said there are dangers of possible abuse. "People can get marijuana to treat athlete's foot," the Naperville resident said. "All you need is for a doctor to write on a piece of paper that marijuana will help your athlete's foot. Now, most people are not advocating those extreme cases, but those cases do exist." But perhaps more damaging, opponents say, is promoting the image of marijuana as a medicine. "When people see marijuana as a medicine, then (they think) it is not harmful," Kreamer said. "After all, (they think) it is a medicine." Paul Armentano, the director of publications for National Organization for Reform of Marijuana Laws, said there is some danger in using marijuana, but compared to other legal drugs, the risk is minimal. "I don't want to argue that any drug is a harmless drug," Armentano said. "But medical marijuana is not a risk to society as a whole." Limited use of marijuana for medical studies has been legal in Illinois since 1978. The law allows researchers to possess, produce and deliver marijuana and prohibits the state from punishing anyone authorized to conduct the research. No one has applied to the Illinois Department of Human Services to conduct research on human subjects, but a few researchers have used the 1978 law to do research with animals.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Judge Rules Against Drug Stops (The Des Moines Register says Polk County District Judge Robert Blink ruled Friday that the Iowa State Patrol went too far last July when troopers questioned drivers merely because they had pulled over after seeing signs on Interstate Highway 80 that warned, "Drug Stop 4 Miles Ahead." There was no drug stop. Instead, plainclothes troopers were waiting at the Mitchellville rest stop to see who pulled in to hide or dispose of drugs before proceeding to the supposed checkpoint.) Date: Sun, 17 Jan 1999 18:12:35 -0800 From: email@example.com (MAPNews) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: MN: US IA: Judge Rules Against Drug Stops Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Carl Olsen Pubdate: Sat, 16 Jan 99 Source: Des Moines Register (IA) Contact: email@example.com Website: http://www.dmregister.com/ Copyright: 1999, The Des Moines Register. Author: Lynn Hicks, Register Business Writer JUDGE RULES AGAINST DRUG STOPS The State Patrol's action at rest areas violates constitutional rights, he says. A Polk County judge ruled Friday that the Iowa State Patrol has gone too far in its drug stings at rest stops. The troopers had questioned drivers last July merely because they had pulled over after seeing signs on Interstate Highway 80 that warned, "Drug Stop 4 Miles Ahead." There was no drug stop. Instead, plainclothes troopers were waiting at the Mitchellville rest stop to see who pulled in to hide or dispose of drugs before getting to the supposed checkpoint. Violated Rights District Judge Robert Blink said the deceptive signs and the troopers' procedures violated constitutional rights against unreasonable searches and seizures. The State Patrol has used the tactic successfully at other rest stops. In October troopers arrested 100 people on drug or weapons charges after the motorists saw the signs on I-80 and pulled over near Wilton. Civil libertarians have criticized the practice as unconstitutional, saying the signs create a situation in which law-abiding drivers can appear guilty. The State Patrol did not return calls seeking comment on the ruling. Polk County Attorney John Sarcone said his office is exploring an appeal. Stopped Last Summer The ruling came in the case of Russell R. Callison of Newton, who was arrested in the Mitchellville operation last summer. His lawyer, Winston E. Hobson, said troopers were "fishing" when they stopped his client. He called the ruling - along with a recent U.S. Supreme Court case - a victory against growing police power in the state. "The war on drugs has unleashed some forces that we're hoping to contain," Hobson said. Callison stopped at the Mitchellville rest area after seeing the signs and fearing a roadblock was ahead. He placed marijuana in his trunk. But troopers admitted they never saw Callison put anything in the trunk. They said they stopped him because of a missing license plate. The troopers began questioning Callison about drugs. Callison, who says he believed he was under arrest, helped open the trunk, where the troopers found the drugs. Blink ruled that the troopers had relied on their ability to search a car when only issuing a traffic citation. In December the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the practice was unconstitutional in the case of another Newton man, Patrick Knowles. The decision to stop, question or search people also was arbitrary, Blink ruled. Troopers apparently questioned drivers whether or not they had committed motor vehicle violations, and there were no criteria that established what questions the officers would ask. The patrol's practices also violated court rulings that say law officers must follow certain requirements in checkpoints, Blink said. There were no barricades, uniformed officers, or police lights. The stops also were unreasonable because troopers could detain selected motorists for more than a few seconds and could extensively search their cars, he said. Blink cautioned that his ruling does not condemn a rest-stop search based on probable cause that a crime was being committed.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Drug Smugglers And Cops Match Wits (An Associated Press article with an Indianapolis dateline describes the highway drug interdiction efforts of state troopers and border agents in every state, coordinated through Operation Pipeline, a federal Drug Enforcement Administration program. Its hub is the El Paso Intelligence Center, or EPIC, a one-story brick building at Biggs Army Airfield in El Paso, Texas, where more than 250 state and federal law enforcement officials track smugglers, scan criminal databases to link cases, and provide 24-hour intelligence to officers in the field. Despite Operation Pipeline, the drug business is worth $52 billion a year in the U.S. according to the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy.) Date: Sun, 17 Jan 1999 18:12:17 -0800 From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) To: email@example.com Subject: MN: US: Wire: Drug Smugglers And Cops Match Wits Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: General Pulaski Pubdate: Sat, 16 Jan 1999 Source: Wire: Associated Press Copyright: 1999 Associated Press. Author: REX W. HUPPKE Associated Press Writer DRUG SMUGGLERS AND COPS MATCH WITS (INDIANAPOLIS (AP) Dean Wildauer knows it's out there. Dangling a cigarette out the window of his Indiana State Police cruiser, the trooper squints at the traffic roaring eastbound on Interstate 70 through a light rain. Oh yeah, he says. It's out there. It could be stashed in duffel bags in the back of that rented Lexus. Or maybe tucked inside the side panels of that minivan. It could be taped inside the tires of a new car on that car carrier or hidden in a washing machine in that moving van. Indiana is carved by Interstates 65, 70 and 80, earning it the title "Crossroads of America." While it's a charming label if you are touring the Midwest, it's a harsh reality if you're trying to stop drug traffic. In 1919, when a young soldier named Dwight D. Eisenhower first thought up the idea of an interstate highway system, he envisioned broad "ribbons across the land," allowing for faster travel and military deployment. Today, Wildauer and cops like him all over the country see the interstates as 24-hour pipelines that supply illegal drugs to rural high schools and big-city streets. State troopers and southwest border agents assigned to stop the flow coordinate their efforts through Operation Pipeline, a federal Drug Enforcement Administration program active in every state. Its hub is the El Paso Intelligence Center (EPIC), a one-story brick building on the north end of Biggs Army Airfield in El Paso, Texas, where more than 250 state and federal law enforcement officials track smugglers, scan criminal databases to link cases and provide 24-hour intelligence to officers in the field. Those officers are equipped with fiberscopes that allow them to peer into gas tanks, density meters that show when something's stuffed in a door or tire, giant border X-rays that can see into tractor trailers. Sometimes, authorities even load busted drug couriers and their vehicles onto military cargo jets and fly them to their delivery points so authorities can make drug deliveries and arrest those on the receiving end. Since 1990, authorities have pulled more than 1.5 million pounds of marijuana and more than 207,000 pounds of cocaine off U.S. highways and interstates, according to the DEA. That includes more than 170,000 pounds of marijuana and more than 19,000 pounds of cocaine in the first eight months of 1998. Still, state and federal officials estimate, nine out of 10 drug shipments on the interstate highways get through. The only way to dry them up, Wildauer says, would be to stop and search every car. In the early 1980s, state troopers in New Mexico and New Jersey noticed a trend. More routine traffic stops along interstates were turning into sizable drug busts. The two states independently set up highway interdiction programs and before long saw a jump in drug seizures. They began sharing information with other states on how to turn moving violations into major drug arrests. In 1984, this cooperation grew into Operation Pipeline. The program trains officers on traffic details to look for things that don't make sense. Do the lug nuts look shiny? Maybe they've been removed recently to stash drugs in the tires. See any shiny screw heads that should be painted over? Any out-of-place weld marks? Those could also point to hiding places. Nearly 50 courses were taught last year, training about 4,000 officers across the country. But the heart of the program is the daily intelligence supplied to the field by EPIC. This recent case from Oklahoma typifies how it works: An Oklahoma Highway Patrol officer pulls a car over because it was weaving. The two people in it act nervous and give conflicting stories. One says they are coming from Dallas, the other says Houston. Suspicious, the officer calls EPIC and asks for a check on the car and its occupants. EPIC has access to databases on drug cases from the FBI, DEA and U.S. Customs. It also keeps track of all highway stops called in to the center. The EPIC search finds that the vehicle crossed the border at Laredo, Texas, about eight hours earlier. A drug-sniffing dog is called in and alerts officers to the trunk. A search reveals 20 kilos of cocaine. Calls like this pour into the center's main operations room, keeping the phones ringing around the clock. The center receives about 30,000 calls per year. Despite Operation Pipeline, the drug business worth $52 billion a year in the U.S. according to the Office of National Drug Control Policy remains one step ahead. Drug organizations run communications networks that tell couriers which roads police are patrolling most. They use drivers, such as senior citizens, who don't fit the stereotype of drug runners. "Hauling dope, it has no race, it has no religion," Wildauer says. "Age doesn't matter. I've locked up a grandmother and her grandkids for hauling marijuana." The illegal drug business pays its drivers so well, authorities say, that most will go to jail rather than inform on higher-ups. The going rate for transporting marijuana is around $100 per pound, with loads ranging anywhere from a couple pounds to several hundred. Drugs are often stashed in hidden compartments of cars or trucks, but authorities have seen cocaine molded into pottery or even heated to a liquid state and soaked into bulk packages of clothing. When authorities figure out where drugs are being hidden, concealment methods change, creating a daily cat-and-mouse game on interstates and along the Mexican border. Noel Ordonez, a U.S. Customs inspector with glaring eyes and a sixth sense that goes off when something's not right, has worked three ports of entry along the Mexican border, questioning thousands of drivers crossing each year. He loves outsmarting drug couriers, but he knows the multibillion dollar drug business is beating him and everyone else along the 2,000-mile border senseless. This doesn't make Ordonez want to give up. "Every 100 pounds of pot I catch is another 100 pounds that won't wind up in some high school somewhere," he says as another big truck pulls up to his booth. "And I know how to find the dope." Ordonez looks for drivers who won't make eye contact, the ones tapping the steering wheel nervously. He questions drivers if he sees a key chain with only one key on it. Why no house key? He is suspicious of those who seem unfamiliar with their vehicles. Along with cars, about 1,000 commercial trucks pass through El Paso's Ysleta Port of Entry each day. More and more, drug dealers are using big trucks to conceal their goods. When Ordonez is suspicious of a truck, he sends it to the docks to be unloaded and searched. Some trucks are driven through a massive X-ray that scans the tractor and trailer. On average, about 100 trucks a day will be scrutinized; the rest pass through unsearched. At the Paso del Norte Port of Entry, which links downtown El Paso with the bustling Mexican city of Juarez, 10 lanes of automobiles stretch in lines several blocks long. Inspectors in dark-blue uniforms move through the lines, tapping their hands on the sides of vehicles, pounding small hammers against tires and hunching over to point flashlights into wheel wells. Employees of the drug smugglers watch, noticing which inspectors are being the most thorough. The men use cell phones to tell couriers which lanes to avoid. A banged-up GMC van with tan and burgundy stripes pulls up to a customs booth. The driver nervously rolls down the window, releasing a strong scent of air freshener. Is he trying to hide something? An inspector directs the van to a parking area. A drug-sniffing dog circles the vehicle, stops midway down the driver's side and barks. Inspectors rip out the van's inside panels, exposing 20 bricks of marijuana about 140 pounds worth nearly $500,000 on the street. Andrew Turner congratulates his dog, Willie, on the find and gives high-fives to the other inspectors gathered to check out the score. "This," Turner says, "makes it all worthwhile." But the inspectors are aware that while they were tied up with this bust, several other loads probably went through. Smugglers, an agent explains, will sometimes allow themselves to get caught with a load of pot so a colleague can sneak a stash of cocaine through while the inspectors are busy. "We know that they're doing it," the agent says, "but how can we stop all of them?" Due east of El Paso, Sgt. Lynn Calamia of the Louisiana State Police is wondering the same thing. His state is carved by two drug pipelines, Interstate 20 in the north and I-10 in the south. Calamia heads state police interdiction efforts. In the first seven months of 1998, his 25-person team confiscated more than $15.8 million in drugs on Louisiana interstates. "It's always coming through," Calamia says. "All hours of the day and night." Just that morning, in fact, one of his patrols in Covington, La., pulled over a weaving car. The two women in it gave conflicting stories, prompting the officer to ask for consent to search. In the trunk he found a huge tin of coffee creamer, an odd thing to take on a trip. A closer look revealed the tin had a hidden compartment holding a little over a pound of crack cocaine. Calamia has seen gas cylinders on the back of a truck that had been cut open, stuffed with drugs, resealed and pressurized. He's seen cars rigged with intricate trick compartments: turn on the defroster, click the turn signal and wiggle the gear shift all at once and the passenger side air bag compartment lifts open. The key to highway interdiction, said Lt. Col. Ronnie Jones, deputy superintendent of operations for the Louisiana State Police, is pulling over as many vehicles as possible. One Louisiana interdiction officer, for example, will pull over 40 to 50 a day. "Unfortunately," Jones said, "an awful lot of people probably get through with dope and are laughing at us from somewhere." Back in Indiana, Wildauer sits in the shadow of an overpass, waiting for the next traffic violation, the next potential drug bust. "We're a Band-Aid over a bullet wound," he says. "We may slow the bleeding, but we'll never stop it."
------------------------------------------------------------------- Giuliani changes his stand on methadone for heroin addicts (According to the Associated Press, the mayor of New York City told the New York Times that drug treatment experts had persuaded him not to eliminate methadone programs, which researchers across the country consider the best hope for most recovering heroin addicts.) From: "Bob Owen@W.H.E.N." (firstname.lastname@example.org) To: "_Drug Policy --" (email@example.com) Subject: NYC mayor changes his stand on methadone for heroin addicts Date: Sat, 16 Jan 1999 16:20:02 -0800 Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Giuliani changes his stand on methadone for heroin addicts The Associated Press 01/16/99 3:09 PM Eastern NEW YORK (AP) -- Mayor Rudolph Giuliani is backing off his plan to move thousands of heroin addicts into abstinence programs at city hospitals. The mayor, who six months ago announced he wanted to abolish methadone treatment, said the original idea was "maybe somewhat unrealistic," according to The New York Times. City officials said Friday that the shift in policy came after a methadone-treatment experiment at five public hospitals resulted in few successes. Methadone, a synthetic drug, is prescribed to cut the craving for heroin. After a five-month tryout, only 21 of the city's 2,100 treated addicts had given up the methadone, health officials said. And of those, five relapsed into heroin use. However, Giuliani said drug treatment experts had persuaded him not to eliminate methadone programs, which researchers across the country still consider the best hope for most recovering heroin addicts. *** When away, you can STOP and RESTART W.H.E.N.'s news clippings by sending an e-mail to email@example.com. Ignore the Subject: line. In the body put "unsubscribe when" to STOP. To RESTART, put "subscribe when" in the e-mail instead (No quotation marks.)
------------------------------------------------------------------- Mayor Relents On Plan To End Methadone Use (The New York Times version) Date: Sat, 16 Jan 1999 08:47:38 -0800 From: firstname.lastname@example.org (MAPNews) To: email@example.com Subject: MN: US NY: NYT: Mayor Relents On Plan To End Methadone Use Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Reply-To: email@example.com Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: Ty Trippet http://www.lindesmith.org/ Pubdate: Sat, 16 Jan 1999 Source: New York Times (NY) Copyright: 1999 The New York Times Company Website: http://www.nytimes.com/ Forum: http://forums.nytimes.com/comment/ Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Author: Rachel L. Swarns LTEs: Letters should be under 150 words and include the author's name, address, day and night phone numbers. Remember, the shorter and simpler, the better. Also, if you don't email the letter by Monday, it is probably too late. See: http://www.mapinc.org/3tips.htm Saturday, January 16, 1999 MAYOR RELENTS ON PLAN TO END METHADONE USE Six months after saying he wanted to abolish New York City's methadone treatment programs, Mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani has abandoned his plan to move all 2,100 heroin addicts at city hospitals into abstinence programs, conceding Friday that his idea was "maybe somewhat unrealistic." The shift came after a five-month city experiment aimed at moving heroin addicts into abstinence programs at the five public hospitals resulted in few successes, city officials said yesterday. Only 21 of the 2,100 addicts have given up methadone, the synthetic drug widely prescribed to blunt the craving for heroin. Of those, five have relapsed into heroin use, the officials said. Giuliani emphasized that he would continue to vigorously promote drug-free programs in the city, adding that he still believes local clinics rely too heavily on methadone. But he said his consultations with drug treatment experts had persuaded him not to eliminate methadone programs, which researchers across the country have described as the best hope for the vast majority of recovering heroin addicts. "What I had proposed was doing away with it completely except for a very short transitional period," said Giuliani in an interview yesterday. "That turned out to be too frightening, too jarring and maybe somewhat unrealistic." Those remarks were quickly applauded by state officials and drug experts who had been stunned by the Mayor's plan and by his attacks on researchers who embraced methadone programs. In August, Giuliani derided methadone supporters as "a politically correct crowd." And in September, he called Gen. Barry R. McCaffrey, the White House's drug policy chief, "a disaster." But all the while, Giuliani and his officials were also moderating their policy, acknowledging at press conferences and City Council hearings that abstinence might not work for everyone. And on Thursday, Giuliani returned to that theme yet again in his State of the City speech, pulling back from his original proposal another degree. "When I say that I want people off methadone and toward drug freedom, I realize that there's going to be a certain percentage where that can't be done but we've got to reverse the horrible situation we're in right now," Giuliani said in his speech. "So how about making a deal?" he continued. "Instead of doing away with methadone completely -- maybe this will calm everybody down -- suppose we reverse the percentages. "Suppose instead of 63 percent of the slots being for keeping people chemically dependent, 63 percent of the slots were for programs that were for drug freedom," he said. "And we'll reserve 10, 15, 20, whatever we have to for methadone for those people who need to have a transition and for those people where drug-free programs just can't work." Dr. Luis R. Marcos, president of the city's Health and Hospitals Corporation, which oversees the city hospitals that had changed their treatment on the Mayor's orders, said the shift reflects a clearer understanding of the patients who struggle to battle addiction. While he had originally estimated that most addicts could move from methadone to abstinence in three months, Dr. Marcos now says he would be happy if 40 percent or 50 percent could make that transition over the next year or two. And he acknowledged that many drug experts would characterize even that estimate as optimistic. "Frankly, after looking at the population that we treat in our public hospitals, three months detox was not realistic," Dr. Marcos said in an interview. State officials say the public hospitals treat only about 6 percent of the 36,000 heroin addicts in methadone treatment programs in New York City; the others receive treatment in clinics financed by the Federal and state governments. Giuliani can affect treatment only in the public hospitals, where the average patient has been relying on methadone for nine years. About 30 percent have also abused alcohol and other drugs. Seventy percent are unemployed and many suffer from mental illness and medical problems, Dr. Marcos said. Under traditional methadone programs, addicts can take the drug indefinitely. Giuliani has argued that addicts on methadone simply substitute one dependency for another and advocated gradually weaning all addicts from methadone altogether after three months. He and his advisers now acknowledge that is unrealistic, and the hospitals will now instead simply encourage addicts to try abstinence. Drug experts said yesterday that the Mayor's remarks would probably have little impact on methadone patients in city hospitals because City Hall's approach never stood a chance of success. They say that the Mayor is simply acknowledging that reality. Wendy Gibson, a spokeswoman for the State Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse, which had opposed Giuliani's plan to abolish methadone, said her office supported the city's policy shift. "We're encouraged that the city understands that there are successes in all types of treatment, including methadone," Ms. Gibson said yesterday. And Don C. Des Jarlais, the director of research for the Chemical Dependency Institute of Beth Israel Medical Center, echoed her sentiments, calling the Mayor's remarks "tremendously encouraging." "It shows a much more sophisticated understanding of the problem of addiction," said Des Jarlais, an expert on heroin addiction. "It is important to provide methadone maintenance for those people who really need that treatment. But creating additional treatment options is likely to be beneficial, to the extent that patients can make their own choices about what treatment works for them." Giuliani said he made his decision after reaching out to various drug treatment experts, including Joseph A. Califano Jr., the former secretary of the U.S. Department of Health, Education and Welfare who is now the chairman of the National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse at Columbia University. And when those experts continued to express reservations about eliminating methadone completely, he reassessed his position. "I met with people, listened to the debate, talked to Joe Califano," Giuliani said. "I really do listen and read what people say and write. And there are times when I actually agree with them."
------------------------------------------------------------------- After Crash, Police Informant Use Re-Evaluated (The Asbury Park Press, in New Jersey, says the state attorney general is considering setting guidelines for police use of "civilian sources" in the wake of a Sunday night crash that left a woman maimed and an informant for the New Jersey state police charged with drunken driving and aggravated assault. Joseph M. Everett, the driver, whose extensive record includes numerous motor vehicle violations, was freed from a cell only two days earlier so he could assist in a police investigation.) Date: Sat, 16 Jan 1999 19:11:27 -0800 From: email@example.com (MAPNews) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: MN: US NJ: After Crash, Police Informant Use Re-Evaluated Sender: email@example.com Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Organization: Media Awareness Project http://www.mapinc.org/lists/ Newshawk: GDaurer@aol.com Pubdate: Sat, 16 Jan 1999 Source: Asbury Park Press (NJ) Website: http://www.injersey.com/app/ Forum: http://chat.injersey.com/ Contact: email@example.com Author: TERRI SOMERS and ALLISON GARVEY STAFF WRITERS AFTER CRASH, POLICE INFORMANT USE RE-EVALUATED IN THE wake of a Sunday night crash that left a Berkeley woman maimed and an informant for the state police charged with drunken driving and aggravated assault, the state attorney general now is considering setting guidelines for police use of civilian sources. The jailed driver, whose extensive record includes numerous motor vehicle violations, had been freed from a cell only two days earlier so he could assist in a police investigation. "Law enforcement does, in fact, rely on the assistance of informants to pursue investigations and to bring others to justice," said Attorney General Peter G. Verniero. "Informants are not always model citizens. That's a fact of life we have to deal with," he said. "I'm open to the possibility of considering whether we need to set uniform standards regarding adult informants, particularly those used by the state police. "But the system depends in some measure on informants. That is a reality." For Lillian Britton, the police practice of using criminals to help catch other criminals resulted in a crash that crushed her left hand and caused the loss of her left index finger. On Jan. 8, at the request of the state police, Superior Court Judge Edward J. Turnbach released Joseph M. Everett from the Ocean County Jail. He was to help in a criminal investigation, details of which haven't been made public. Everett had been in jail since December because he had failed to make required court appearances stemming from guilty pleas he entered last October to charges of eluding, theft and escape. There were also several outstanding bench warrants for his arrest issued in Barnegat, Stafford and Jersey City, for failing to appear in municipal court on motor vehicle charges, police said. Less than 48 hours after his release, Everett's long criminal record grew longer. Police said that around 9:30 p.m. last Sunday, he was drunk and driving in excess of 85 mph on Route 9 in Lacey when his car slammed into Britton's vehicle, sending it about 250 feet through the air and into a utility pole. The day after the crash, Turnbach revoked Everett's bail and issued another bench warrant for his arrest. Everett is once again behind bars in the Ocean County jail. State police yesterday refused to comment on the decision to seek Everett's release from jail. A state police spokesman said Thursday that authorities weigh the risk of releasing a prisoner, but in this case, "the risk was greater than anticipated." Requests to free prisoners so that they can help police are left to a judge's discretion. There are no state guidelines or court rules for the judge to follow, according to a spokesman for the state Administrative Office of the Courts. Turnbach has declined to speak to a reporter about the decision. Everett's lawyer, Robert P. Ward, could not be reached for comment. Verniero would not speak specifically about the Everett case. He explained, generally, how informants are used and how that might change. In both state and federal cases, requests for release from incarceration are usually made by "mid-level" managers in the law enforcement agencies, not the top brass, Verniero said. Investigators working on individual cases have considerable leeway in determining what they need to pursue their case, and rightly so, he said. But the requests are reviewed by a judge, so there are safeguards, he said. "The question . . . is should there be uniform standards from the prosecutor's or law enforcement's point of view? Verniero is wary of regulations that would make use of informants too "cumbersome," noting that police often have to make swift decisions during investigations. In August 1997, Verniero issued guidelines for police considering the use of juveniles as informants, designed to protect young people. These were the result of lengthy discussion with prosecutors and police throughout the state, Verniero said. The attorney general said he would use the same process to determine if police think adult informant guidelines are needed. If so, Verniero said he would put together a task force to start preparing them.
------------------------------------------------------------------- Bureaucrat (A list subscriber posts the email address of the White House drug czar, General Barry McCaffrey. You have a constitutional right to petition for a redress of grievances at MCCAFFREY_B@a1.eop.gov.) Date: Sat, 16 Jan 1999 13:30:57 -0500 To: "DRCTalk Reformers' Forum" (firstname.lastname@example.org) From: Paul Wolf (email@example.com) Subject: bureaucrat Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org Sender: email@example.com MCCAFFREY_B@a1.eop.gov (a government official who follows a narrow rigid formal routine or who is established with great authority in his own department) -------------------------------------------------------------------
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