For those Colorado residents who got popped for low-level cannabis crimes before the passage of Amendment 64 in 2012, it’s been a limiting mark against them when it comes to employment, housing and not to mention the legal problems they had to go through in the first place. Now, in a socially progressive idea that’s on its way to action, Denver officials are planning to wipe the slate clean for thousands of residents.
The erasures of records would cover those convicted between 2001 and 2013. The district attorney is onboard and is working to manifest this new lease on life for many individuals.
Denver Mayor Michael Hancock said in a statement, “This is an injustice that needs to be corrected, and we are going to provide a pathway to move on from an era of marijuana prohibition that has impacted the lives of thousands of people,”
As it stands, people are able to petition the court to remove low-level cannabis related offenses, but that takes time and money that not everyone has available. The initiative of government officials to do this on their own is another great indicator that the tides continue to change in favor of cannabis and against the once prominent stigma that surrounded it.
At this point, nearly a dozen states and the District of Columbia have outright legalized cannabis and 33 more states have medicalized the plant. Regardless of marijuana’s ridiculous Schedule I status, meaning that it has no known medical benefits and a high potential for abuse, the U.S. continues to push ahead with cannabis reform. As does the rest of the world. Luxemburg just announced that it will be the first country in the E.U. to legalize recreational use and Canada became the second nation in the world to legalize adult use back in July.
The roots of the marijuana movement were planted deeply in the culture of social justice and that meant keeping people out of jail for a harmless and beneficial plant, getting people back out of jail when they were caught with the herb and making sure that the very ill had safe access to the best cannabis. They continue to inform the budding industry and record expungements for cannabis offenses make sense and will change lives for the better.