CANNABIS CLEMENCY CAMPAIGN

The Weldon Project and National Cannabis Roundtable Launch Cannabis Clemency Campaign

Officially launched in July 2022, this campaign formalizes the ongoing collaboration between The Weldon Project, National Cannabis Roundtable, and other partners to secure clemency for individuals convicted of federal marijuana offenses.

This initiative will encourage the Biden Administration and Congress to advance policies that would grant clemency to qualifying individuals who have been convicted on federal cannabis charges.

“Through clemency, President Biden has an opportunity to deliver justice for the thousands of Americans who have been impacted by federal cannabis prohibition and punitive sentencing practices,” said Weldon Angelos, President and cofounder of The Weldon Project. “This would fulfill one of President Biden’s campaign pledges and send a powerful message about this Administration’s dedication to criminal justice reform. I’m proud to formally launch this campaign alongside the National Cannabis Roundtable, and look forward to working together to redress the harm done by federal marijuana prohibition.”

The launch of the campaign is the culmination of existing efforts by MISSION [GREEN] and NCR in conjunction with the Justice Roundtable, Arizona State University, Oklahoma Appleseed, and other organizations. The Cannabis Clemency Campaign will continue to build upon ongoing initiatives including but not limited to:

  • Continue consultations and conversations with the Biden Administration to recommend the establishment of multi-factor criteria to categorically identify an individual’s qualification for clemency.
  • Collaborating with experts and academics to find the best avenues to pursue criteria-based clemency applications for individuals convicted of federal marijuana offenses. The Cannabis Clemency Campaign will participate in a symposium in Washington, D.C., led by Professor Erik Luna, Amelia D. Lewis Professor of Constitutional and Criminal Law at the Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law at Arizona State University, the Justice Roundtable, and the Weldon Project’s MISSION [GREEN].
  • Preparing and filing clemency applications for eligible individuals in conjunction with The Oklahoma Appleseed Center for Law and Justice.

“It is unacceptable that thousands of individuals with nonviolent federal cannabis convictions continue to sit behind bars in this country,” said Saphira Galoob, Executive Director of the National Cannabis Roundtable. “Through the Cannabis Clemency Campaign, we will bring together the leading minds on cannabis and clemency so that we can accomplish swift, meaningful criminal justice reform. We look forward to working with the Biden Administration and other leaders in the cannabis reform space to ensure that President Biden fulfills his campaign promise.”

SHAPING POLICY
White House

NCR supports the ongoing efforts to employ the federal clemency process, both to correct lingering injustices and to ensure a more efficient and fair system. With this in mind, we propose a Cannabis Clemency Initiative that would fulfill President Biden’s campaign pledge to help those still incarcerated in federal prison for marijuana offenses.

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CONVENING
Cannabis Criminal Justice & Clemency Symposium

On July 20, 2022, The Academy for Justice at the Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law at Arizona State University—in conjunction with the Justice Roundtable, the National Cannabis Roundtable, and the Weldon Project’s MISSION [GREEN]—hosted an in-person, invite-only symposium to discuss clemency policy and criminal justice reform within the current landscape of U.S. cannabis law.

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ADVOCATING
Oklahoma Appleseed

NCR and The Weldon Project have been working with Oklahoma Appleseed for the purpose of preparing approximately 20 to 30 petitions for individuals currently incarcerated because of cannabis convictions.

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