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A New Hope for Recreational Drug Users?

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A New Hope for Recreational Drug Users?

People caught with minor amounts of illicit substances might soon breathe a sigh of relief. A new legislative proposal in the NSW Parliament offers an alternative to criminal penalties for personal drug possession. The twist? Offenders could “work off” their fines by seeking help.

'Two-Strike' Policy

– The two-strike scheme may allow thousands of recreational users of drugs like ice, cocaine, and MDMA to sidestep criminal repercussions.

– This approach is designed to shift the police’s focus from users to dealers and ensure users get the help they need to steer clear of long-term drug habits.

– If passed, adults found with small quantities of drugs might receive a criminal infringement notice: a $400 fine. But there’s a way out. By undertaking a “tailored drug and alcohol intervention,” they can have their fine annulled. No intervention? Revenue NSW will come knocking for the fine.

– Health Minister Ryan Park emphasizes this as an “evidence-based” strategy, aligning drug use and dependency more as health concerns rather than criminal offences.

– However, this leniency won’t extend to drug trafficking, manufacturing, or those with prior dealing convictions.

For the police, it’s not just about handing out fines. Police Minister Yasmin Catley elaborates that the proposed system would result in “better outcomes for low-level drug offending without compromising safety.” The on-the-spot fine isn’t obligatory, and police can still opt for court proceedings if deemed necessary.


NSW Drug Law Overhaul

While this overhaul brings NSW more in line with other Australian states, it doesn’t come without its share of debates. The law aims to address the broader issues surrounding drug usage and its societal impacts, but there are concerns about the government’s commitment to drug reforms.

In an ever-evolving legal landscape, it’s crucial to understand how these changes might impact you or those you know. As always, if you have questions or concerns related to these legal changes, Jameson Law is here to guide you through it.


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