US: House passes bill to decriminalize marijuana nationwide

The House of Representatives of the United States approved, this Friday, 1st, a bill that removes marijuana from the federal list of dangerous drugs and takes another step towards the decriminalization of the substance at the federal level.

If also passed in the Senate, the bill will overturn federal convictions for drug crimes which, according to the text’s supporters, lead to mass arrests, which mainly affect minorities. The measure would release people incarcerated for crimes related to the substance, as long as the amount seized does not exceed 30 grams.

In addition to the Democratic deputies, who voted in favor of the text almost unanimously, three Republican deputies endorsed the project project.

Decriminalization could open up a new market in states where consumption, production and sale are still prohibited.

The text also contains measures to control use. Among them, the allocation of specific funds to the bodies responsible for inspecting highways, in order to curb driving under the influence of the substance, in addition to funds aimed at preparing studies on the productivity of workers and the use of marijuana.

“There are so many discussions that have taken place over the years about marijuana use or cannabis or anything else… The fact is that it exists. It’s being used. We have to address how this is handled legally,” said House Speaker Democrat Nancy Pelosi.

Currently, the United States deals with toxicity as a public safety issue, focusing on state punishment, rather than as a health-related issue, thinking about rehabilitation and treatment of users, like other countries that have decriminalized the use of marijuana. .

The US government’s stance has dramatically increased the number of criminal offenders for drug-related crimes, disproportionately among the black community.

Across the country, blacks are nearly four times more likely to be arrested for marijuana possession compared to whites, despite similar usage rates between the two groups.

While obstacles to federal decriminalization remain, 18 states have legalized recreational marijuana and 37 have endorsed the use of medical marijuana.

For the proposal to pass the Senate, it must have the signatures of all House Democrats and at least 10 Republicans.

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