This week, the nation celebrated 4/20 as revolutionary cannabis laws passed in the country.
In case you missed it, New York finally agreed to legalize marijuana last month, joining 16 other states who’d already done so. Following the news, cannabis connoisseurs have been in an especially festive mood — and now, Birmingham Mayor Randall Woodfin has given everyone even more reason to celebrate.
Mayor Woodfin officially pardoned anyone, who over the last three decades, was convicted of misdemeanor marijuana possession. The pardon covered more than 15,000 cases, reports state. From The Root:
“On Tuesday, Woodfin announced a blanket pardon for anyone with a closed marijuana conviction in the Birmingham Municipal Courts between 1990 and 2020. The blanket pardon, issued in conjunction with the city’s Pardons for Progress initiative sent more than 15,000 possession cases up in smoke. In an exclusive interview with The Root, Woodfin explained that the move was a last-ditch effort to blunt the devastating effects of the war on drugs.”
“Woodfin’s decree only affects those who have been convicted in the city’s municipal courts and does not affect open cases. However, the mayor’s office noted that citizens with open cases can still apply for a pardon through Pardons for Progress once the case has been adjudicated,” the site goes on.
Apparently, the Pardons for Progress program began back in 2019, but when Mayor Woodfin didn’t like the extremely low level of participation, he decided to stop waiting on people to come to him and started being proactive about going to the people.
“Instead of asking people to come to us for help, I decided to take it to the people,” Woodfin told The Root. “So that’s what we did.”