In an interview with NPR, San Francisco District Attorney George Gascón spoke with Ari Shapiro about the recent move from his office to dismiss thousands of marijuana-related convictions dating back to 1975 in response to California legalizing recreational marijuana this year.
SHAPIRO: In real-world terms, if somebody was convicted of marijuana possession or use 20 years ago, what kind of an impact would that have had on a person’s life?
GASCON: If you have a felony conviction on your record, let’s begin by saying you cannot vote. There are many places where you will not be able to rent or buy a home. There are employers that will not hire you. You cannot get certain types of student loans, cannot get certain public assistance. So there’s a whole bunch of things that preclude you from participating to the fullest in the social society by having that conviction. And what we’re saying is, the public in California has determined that this should not be a crime. Then let’s go back and repair some of the harm… It looks like we may have about 5,000 cases that actually would qualify under Prop 64 for felony relief.
What cities will be next and follow San Francisco in dismissing these life-harming convictions now that Marijuana is legal in multiple states? Sound off below.