For the full text of this press release in PDF format, please click here: ATNJ: Legalize Marijuana Now and Restore Justice
For Immediate Release:
ATNJ: Legalize Marijuana Now and Restore Justice
MADISON, NJ, March 20, 2019 – Last week, Governor Phil Murphy announced that New Jersey’s Medicinal Marijuana Program (MMP) has reached another milestone, adding more than 25,000 new patients, nearly 1,000 new caregivers and more than 400 doctors over the last year. We at ATNJ are excited by the momentum of the growing MMP program and are hopeful that significant marijuana legislation will be passed by the end of the month.
New Jersey lawmakers have voted to advance the long-awaited legislation for a floor vote in both chambers, which would allow people currently serving sentences for marijuana possession to petition to have their sentences vacated. Every day that goes by, individuals are arrested for low-level cannabis possession, and as we know, the majority of these individuals are people of color, despite the fact that Caucasian New Jersey residents are consuming cannabis at the same rate.
The time to act is now. We have the chance to begin to restore justice, and help repair the damage the war on drugs has caused to New Jersey’s most vulnerable communities. ATNJ will continue to advocate for this much needed legislation on behalf of all New Jersey residents and we look forward to the vote next week.
Action Together New Jersey supports a portion of the potential tax revenue from the sale of adult use recreational cannabis earmarked for those communities most harmed by prohibition. We will continue to press for these reparations. Secondly, with far fewer dispensaries than other states, patients are driving many hours to get their medication, which is not covered by insurance costing an individual $10,000/year on average, we see a moral obligation to allow home cultivation.
We ask all New Jersey legislators to do what is right for the most vulnerable communities negatively affected by the decades of the war on drugs: provide justice and help those in need.
Director of Drug Policy Reform
Uyen “Winn” Khuong
About Action Together New Jersey
ATNJ, a non-profit progressive group, is the largest grassroots organization in New Jersey. ATNJ has chapters in every county, because change is local. Functioning as a central command for statewide initiatives and legislative actions, ATNJ’s teams work with coalitions of like-minded groups to serve the public by educating the electorate, providing a platform for progressive candidates, advancing legislative proposals with elected officials, and working in concert with advocacy groups for human rights. ATNJ seeks to promote equality and progressive ideals and to secure a more inclusive, fair and equitable future for New Jersey and the nation. For more information, visit www.ATNJ.org.