Caitlin Owens

Some of America’s bluest cities and states are abandoning progressive approaches to drug use and homelessness, instead embracing harder-line measures amid political backlash.

Why it matters: The worsening drug overdose, mental health and housing crises that are often intertwined and increasingly spill into U.S. streets are fueling the shift away from more compassionate approaches.

Driving the news: Oregon is backing away from its controversial experiment with decriminalizing drug use, while San Francisco voters last week approved a ballot measure requiring drug screening for people receiving public benefits suspected of illicit drug use. Read more.