Federal cannabis legalization would serve as the ideal step toward reversing the effects of the racially motivated and enforced War on Drugs. However, President Biden has not yet supported such a policy position, despite pressure from Democrats in Congress. Absent federal legislation, there are still a series of steps the administration and states can take to recognize the harmful effects of the War on Drugs, especially on communities of color, and the institutionalization of injustice, inequity, and diminished opportunity.
On May 25, Governance Studies at Brookings hosted a webinar to discuss issues of cannabis legalization, restorative justice, and economic opportunity. Panelists examined the disproportionate impact of the War on Drugs on communities of color and highlighted opportunities, challenges, and recommendations to advance equity and justice through cannabis policy reform.