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March 13, 2024

Rep. Pressley Applauds Gov. Healey’s Marijuana Pardon Proposal

WASHINGTON — Today, Congresswoman Ayanna Pressley (MA-07) issued the following statement on Governor Maura Healey’s proposal to pardon marijuana possession convictions in Massachusetts.

“By using her clemency authority to pardon marijuana possession convictions in the Commonwealth, Governor Healey has taken a meaningful step toward addressing the hurt and harm of cannabis criminalization and setting our communities on a pathway to healing. This action can help hundreds of thousands of people in Massachusetts – including many in the Massachusetts 7th – secure housing and employment and reduce other barriers that have prevented formerly incarcerated people from successfully re-entering society.

“I commend Governor Healey’s action today and urge the Governor’s Council to swiftly approve these pardons. At the federal level, I continue to call on Congress to pass legislation like my FIX Clemency Act to address the unjust clemency backlog nationwide, and continue advancing policies to legalize marijuana and invest in communities disproportionately harmed by the failed War on Drugs. Our work to transform our criminal legal system to center justice, equity and decarceration is ongoing, but I am grateful that Massachusetts and our Governor are taking critical steps.”

On June 19, 2023, Juneteenth, Rep. Pressley re-introduced the People’s Justice Guarantee, a comprehensive, decarceration-focused resolution that outlines a framework for a fair, equitable and just legal system, including the decriminalization of addiction and legalization of marijuana.

In December 2021, Rep. Pressley, along with Reps. Cori Bush (MO-01) and Hakeem Jeffries (NY-08) and grassroots advocates, unveiled the Fair and Independent Experts in Clemency (FIX Clemency) Act, historic legislation to transform our nation’s broken clemency system and address the growing mass incarceration crisis. 

In October 2022, Rep. Pressley issued a statement applauding President Biden’s executive action pardoning thousands of people for simple possession of marijuana.