Drug legalization efforts are moving forward in parts of the U.S. and not just marijuana. On Tuesday, voters OK'd a series of initiatives seeking to decriminalize pot but some harder drugs, too.
Taking center stage was Oregon, where voters supported decriminalizing small possessions of some street drugs like heroin and LSD — the first state to do so. Those caught in possession would face a $100 fine instead of criminal prosecution. And that fine can be waived if the person agrees to attend a treatment program.
Supporters say the change puts the focus on public health rather than locking users up. Those against it, such as the Oregon Republican Party, say it's a reckless move and won’t guarantee more treatment for hard drug users.
Oregon also became the first state to legalize an ingredient in psychedelic mushrooms for therapeutic use. Licensed service providers will be able to administer psilocybin-producing mushroom and fungi products to people 21 years or older.
Voters also gave their stamp of approval on a series of marijuana measures in five states.
In New Jersey, Arizona, Montana and South Dakota, voters say recreational marijuana can be legalized. Arizona is also allowing for certain convicted marijuana crimes to be expunged. In addition, Mississippi and South Dakota are moving forward with approval of marijuana for medical use.
In all, 15 states — Blue and Red — have now signaled approval for legalized weed. That's up from zero just a decade ago.