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President Biden to pardon simple marijuana possession offenses

Marijuana Docs
(AP Photo/Ed Andrieski)

The White House has announced that President Joe Biden plans to pardon U.S residents who have been charged with simple possession of marijuana under federal law.
The announcement was made on Thursday.
The pardon is one of the first major steps the administration has taken in the Biden campaign promise to decriminalize marijuana at the Federal level, and is an effort to allow those with minor offenses to participate in society with fewer restrictions:
“There are thousands of people who have prior federal convictions for marijuana possession, who may be denied employment, housing, or educational opportunities as a result. My action will help relieve the collateral consequences arising from these convictions,” Biden said in a statement.
The pardon will affect about 6,500 individuals according, to the Administration. Most people who have been convicted, have been convicted under state law.
Biden also encouraged governors to take similar steps:
“No one should be in jail just for using or possessing marijuana,” Biden said in a video announcing his executive actions. “It’s legal in many states, and criminal records for marijuana possession have led to needless barriers to employment, housing, and educational opportunities. And that’s before you address the racial disparities around who suffers the consequences. While white and Black and brown people use marijuana at similar rates, Black and brown people are arrested, prosecuted, and convicted at disproportionate rates.”
“Too many lives have been upended because of our failed approach to marijuana. It’s time that we right these wrongs,” the President said.