Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx believes the federal pardons send a message across the country, “... that we need to move towards decriminalization and ultimately vacating convictions like we have done here in Illinois”
President Joe Biden is pardoning thousands of Americans convicted of “simple possession” of marijuana under federal law, as his administration takes a dramatic step toward decriminalizing the drug and addressing charging practices that disproportionately impact people of color.
Illinois was supposed to be the national model when government leaders pledged they’d use the 2020 legalization of marijuana to right the wrongs of the war on drugs that disproportionately harmed Black and Latino communities. Nearly three years later, those poised to benefit say they’re still stymied.
Three local organizations are banding together in an effort to bring more equity to the Illinois marijuana industry.
The survey found that 11% of young adults reported using marijuana on a daily basis in 2021 and 43% had used it in the past year. About 8% of young adults reported using substances such as LSD, PCP and psychedelic mushrooms in the past year, up from just 3% in 2011.
According to the state, of the business selected for the cannabis licenses, 41% are majority Black owned, 7% are majority White owned, 4% are majority Latino owned and 38% did not disclose the owner’s race.
A new business venture from a co-founder of a Chicago weed giant fizzles. The company that gave up the Water Tower Place is now selling it’s big property across the street. And there’s some good news for landlords trying to fill suburban office spaces.
The state has awarded 48 cultivation licenses to craft cannabis growers, and 100% of the licenses are going to social equity winners — folks who were most impacted by the nation’s so-called war on drugs.
Chicago-area retail stores hit record-high sales, but that's not without impacting online buying as Amazon looks to sublet warehouse space. Meanwhile, legal limbo over nearly 200 pot shop licenses could soon come to an end.
Nearly two-and-a-half years after recreational cannabis became legal to sell in Illinois, state Rep. La Shawn Ford (D-Chicago) says Illinois has failed to live up to the promise of the law.
Kim Foxx’s office on Friday will present 214 marijuana cases to be automatically expunged, bringing the total number of low-level convictions erased since Dec. 2019 up to 15,191.
A Chicago-based cannabis company is now working to expose harsh sentences for recreational marijuana use as it becomes legal in several states. Cresco helped produce a short film on the sentencing of Michael Thompson, a Michigan man who was given 42 to 60 years in prison for a marijuana-related arrest.
More than two years after a state law legalizing recreational marijuana was passed, an estimated 34,000 Illinoisans are still waiting to have their cannabis records expunged, according to the Sentencing Policy Advisory Council.
Black Caucus Chair Ald. Jason Ervin (28th Ward) said the City Council should act quickly and loosen the rules because the legal sale of cannabis is “raining hundred-dollar bills” and those hurt by the war on drugs should be able to take advantage of the gold rush.
A push by Mayor Lori Lightfoot to allow cannabis to be sold legally downtown cleared a key city panel on Wednesday, even though it won’t allow Michigan Avenue to become a “pot paradise.”
Illinois today selected another 55 winners from a pool of 589 qualifying applicants seeking to open cannabis dispensaries. It’s another step on a long-delayed process of growing Illinois’ marijuana market, with a mind toward social equity. But is it working?