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Abstract

The King County formed the Task Force on the Use of Criminal Sanctions as part of the King County Bar Association's Drug Policy Project to examine current criminal sanctions related to the non-medical use of drugs both in Washington and on the federal level. The founders charged the Task Force with the goal of assessing the effectiveness of criminal sanctions in reducing both illegal drug use and drug-related crime, and assessing the public costs associated with the use of criminal sanctions. The Task Force drew specific conclusions regarding the state response to drug use and the provision of drug addiction treatment. Anticipating that statutory changes will be considered, the Task Force formulated a set of principles to guide the development of an alternative approach to the problem of drug abuse that is more effective, less expensive, and more humane.

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