Sunday in New York City saw the opening of a new cannabis resource center that aims to advance equity in the state’s marijuana industry.
This came just days after Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) filed a hotly anticipated federal marijuana legalization bill.
The leader argued that the equality provisions of New York’s cannabis law, in particular, should serve as a template for the rest of the nation.
Although the state’s reform initiative is a step in the right direction, he emphasized the necessity for a change in federal policy in order to best achieve social fairness.
The legalization statute that New York passed and his new plan to remove the prohibition, according to Schumer, intersect in this regard.
Both bills specifically aim to assist those who have been disproportionately harmed by the drug war while also ending the criminalization of cannabis.
At the event, Schumer said, “We’re trying at the federal level to mimic what New York has done—not just in legalization and ending criminalization but making sure social justice is an essential part of any legislation.”
He added that he and his colleagues are “making some progress” in gaining support for marijuana reform from “conservative Republicans and libertarians.”
They all smoke too, a member of the audience commented after seeing that aspect.
Schumer nodded and said, “Yeah, they smoke.” As laughter erupted throughout the room.