SACRAMENTO, Calif- A state senator from San Francisco has introduced a bill that would change drug punishment laws in California. The bill, SB1506, would allow officials to go easier on people who are busted for carrying illegal drugs for personal use.
The bill changes the definition of "transporting" a drug to mean transporting it for sale, eliminating an additional charge for someone who might otherwise only be charged with drug possession.
"How does that burden, which mostly affects young brown and black people, benefit any of us?" Leno said, noting a felony limits a person's ability to get a job, housing and college aid. The current system "perpetuates a chronic underclass," said Sen. Mark Leno, D-San Francisco, in an article for SFgate.com
Leno said that statistics for drug treatment is higher for states that classify drug possession as a misdemeanor.
This is not the first drug reform legislation that Leno has introduced. In May, he introduced SB 649, which allows counties to significantly reduce incarceration costs by giving prosecutors the flexibility to charge low-level, non-violent drug offenses as misdemeanors instead of felonies.