Last year, with the passage of Proposition 64, California voters decided to decriminalize the adult use of cannabis. With a strong 69 percent supermajority, voters in Alameda declared that the preciously existing system was not working and ushered in a new era in statewide cannabis policy.
Communities of color had been disproportionately criminalized leading to mass incarceration. And ongoing damage was being inflicted as community members later had difficulty obtaining jobs with criminal convictions on their records.
For several years, I’ve helped lead the effort in the state Legislature to create a comprehensive state-level structure of regulation that enhances public safety, protects the environment, ensures access to quality medicine for patients, is fair, and, in the process, destigmatizes medical and responsible and regulated adult use of cannabis.
Starting in 2015, we passed the Medical Cannabis