“Chicago Decriminalizes Marijuana, but Will It Curb Racialized Policing?” @ Truthout

Posted on July 2, 2012

Yana Kunichoff — June 28, 2012: “Chicago joined several other localities this week when the City Council voted to decriminalize marijuana. The new ordinance, which would allow people caught with less than half an ounce of the drug to face fines instead of being arrested, hopes to counter the devastating effects that the criminalization of low-level drugs has had on communities of color in the city.

‘The Chicago City Council’s vote today to allow police to issue a ticket rather than arrest someone for marijuana possession is very much a step in the right direction. The near unanimous support for the measure as well as specific comments by [aldermen] demonstrated significant concern with the waste of police resources, harmful consequences of an arrest and the fact that over three-fourths of all marijuana arrests are of African Americans,’ said Ethan Nadelmann, executive director of the Drug Policy Alliance, in a statement. ‘If the measure is implemented in good faith, it should reduce the negative consequences of the state’s marijuana prohibition laws in Chicago…………………………..’

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