Drug Policy Action Statement on Bernie Sanders’ Marijuana Legalization Platform

DPA Worked with Sanders Campaign to Ensure Criminal Justice Reforms and Social Equity were at the Heart of the Platform

Matt Sutton 212-613-8026

October 24, 2019 – New York, NY – Below is a statement from Queen Adesuyi, National Affairs Policy Manager for Drug Policy Action, in response to 2020 presidential contender Sen. Bernie Sanders proposed plan to legalize marijuana and begin repairing the harms caused by prohibition:

“We are grateful for the opportunity our team had to work with the Sanders campaign to ensure criminal justice reforms and social equity were at the forefront of his marijuana legalization platform.

When it comes to ending prohibition, we cannot go forward without looking back. It is not enough to just legalize marijuana. We must do it the right way, and that means reinvesting in the communities that have been most harmed by the cruel and inhumane policies brought forth through the war on drugs.

As the country moves to recognize marijuana and drug use in general as a public health issue, it is crucial that communities directly impacted by criminalization are not left to continue suffering from collateral consequences of convictions or left out of legal economic opportunities. For other candidates to not consider these components in their platforms would be to deny the harrowing history of how communities of color have been targeted by these policies for the last century.”