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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 50720 Find in a Library
Title: OHIO'S NEW DRUG LAW - TOWARDS A MORE RATIONAL APPROACH TO THE DRUG PROBLEM
Journal: JOURNAL OF DRUG ISSUES  Volume:8  Issue:3  Dated:(SUMMER 1978)  Pages:285-295
Author(s): W J BROWN
Corporate Author: Journal of Drug Issues
Editor
United States of America
Date Published: 1978
Page Count: 11
Sponsoring Agency: Journal of Drug Issues
Tallahassee, FL 32315
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: PROVISIONS OF OHIO'S DRUG ABUSE CONTROL ACT, WHICH INITIATES A DRUG ABUSE CONTROL PROGRAM UNDER A TOTALLY REVISED LAW, ARE DISCUSSED.
Abstract: PRIOR TO ENACTMENT OF THE LAW IN 1976, DRUG LEGISLATION IN OHIO HAD BEEN BASED ON A 'FAMILY' CONCEPT. AS SPECIFIC FAMILIES OF DRUGS BECAME A SERIOUS PROBLEM, LAWS WERE ENACTED TO CONTROL THEM. THIS SYSTEM WAS UNCOORDINATED AND RIGID, PRODUCING SERIOUS PROBLEMS AS NEW SUBSTANCES THAT DID NOT FALL WITHIN A SPECIFIC FAMILY EMERGED. OHIO'S NEW LAW ADOPTS THE FEDERAL SYSTEM OF CONTROLLED SUBSTANCE SCHEDULES IN ITS ENTIRETY. THIS SYSTEM FOCUSES ON CONTROLLING CERTAIN MODES OF CONDUCT AND ON PENALIZING VIOLATIONS ACCORDING TO THE DANGER OF THE DRUG INVOLVED, RATHER THAN ON CONTROLLING FAMILIES OF DRUGS. DRUGS ARE CLASSIFIED INTO FIVE SEPARATE SCHEDULES BASED ON THREE CRITERIA: RELATIVE POTENTIAL FOR ABUSE; MEDICAL USE OR LACK THEREOF; AND POTENTIAL FOR CREATING PSYCHOLOGICAL OR PHYSICAL DEPENDENCE. THE OHIO LAW PROVIDES THREE METHODS FOR AMENDING THE SCHEDULE: ADMINISTRATIVE ACTION BY THE OHIO STATE BOARD OF PHARMACY; AUTOMATIC CHANGE EQUIVALENT TO A CHANGE IN THE FEDERAL SCHEDULE; AND LEGISLATIVE ACTION BY THE OHIO GENERAL ASSEMBLY. ONCE THE SCHEDULE SYSTEM WAS ADOPTED, THE NEXT STEP WAS TO DEFINE THE CONDUCT TO BE CONTROLLED AND TO ATTACH REASONABLE, RATIONAL PENALTIES FOR VIOLATIONS. THIS EFFORT WAS GUIDED BY THE PRINCIPLE OF SEEKING TO PUT DRUG PUSHERS IN JAIL AND TO ENCOURAGE DRUG ABUSERS TO SEEK TREATMENT. OHIO'S PENALTY STRUCTURE APPLICABLE TO DRUG LAW VIOLATIONS IS THREE-TIERED, WITH PENALTIES DEPENDING ON THE SCHEDULE ON WHICH THE DRUG APPEARS. THE LAW ALSO PROVIDES FOR CONDITIONAL PROBATION FOR OFFENDERS WHO ARE DRUG DEPENDENT OR IN DANGER OF BECOMING DRUG DEPENDENT, AND FOR PRETRIAL DIVERSION OF SUCH PERSONS. MANDATES OF THE NEW LAW WILL REQUIRE OHIO LAW ENFORCEMENT AGENCIES TO REDIRECT THEIR MAJOR EFFORTS TOWARD THE PUSHER RATHER THAN THE USER, AND TO CRACK DOWN ON HARDCORE DRUGS MORE THAN MARIHUANA. (LKM)
Index Term(s): Drug law offenses; Drug laws; Drug regulation; Law reform; Ohio; State laws
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=50720

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