As his administration takes a significant step toward decriminalizing the substance and addressing charging practices that unfairly affect people of color, President Joe Biden is pardoning thousands of Americans who were found guilty of “simple possession” of marijuana.
Most marijuana possession prosecutions involve state marijuana violations; thus, he urges governors to grant comparable pardons to those guilty of these offenses.
The decision, according to Biden, “reflects his conviction that no one should be in jail solely for using or carrying marijuana.”
“There are thousands of people who have prior Federal convictions for marijuana possession, which may be denied employment, housing, or educational opportunities as a result,” Biden said.
“My action will help relieve the collateral consequences arising from these convictions,” Biden added.
Additionally, Biden has instructed the U.S. attorney general and the Health and Human Services secretary to investigate how marijuana is classified under federal law.