A Message from our Executive Director and Policy Director on the Passage of HB 4002

When Oregonians passed Measure 110 in 2020, our state chose to step forward into the arc of history — towards more justice. Today, Oregon’s lawmakers knowingly took us backwards. By passing HB 4002 which recriminalizes drug addiction, they chose to send our most vulnerable neighbors to jail instead of treatment. This is not justice.

However, we are not done.

ACLU of Oregon’s 27,000+ members imagined an Oregon filled with healing and thriving communities, not more jails and prisons. And we took action. Thousands of us engaged in our democracy — calling and emailing lawmakers and submitting testimony. We asked for real solutions including more treatment, housing, prevention programs, community revitalization efforts, and non-police mobile crisis response teams.

We will continue envisioning and fighting for an Oregon of greater justice, equity, and care.

The ACLU of Oregon community has deep gratitude for the representatives and senators who voted 'no' to the false promises of criminalization in HB 4002 — and its unconscionable human and other costs to our state. We especially acknowledge Representatives Chaichi, Nelson, Pham, and Gamba and Senators Prozanski, Jama, Frederick, Dembrow and Manning Jr.

And on a difficult day, we remember the following wisdom from the Mishnah, written texts from the Jewish oral traditions:

Do not be daunted by the enormity of the world’s grief.
Do justly, now.
Love mercy, now.
Walk humbly, now.
You are not obligated to complete the work, but neither are you free to abandon it.

With gratitude for the ACLU of Oregon community and all who fight for more justice,

— Sandy Chung, ED, and Jessica Maravilla, Policy Director