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Ben & Jerry's calls on Congress to expunge prior marijuana convictions

Posted at 7:17 PM, Apr 22, 2019
and last updated 2019-04-22 19:17:03-04

(WTXL) — The famous ice cream company Ben & Jerry's is calling on Congress to expunge prior marijuana convictions and provide pardons to anyone whose only crime was possession of cannabis.

On Saturday, the company released a statement announcing their petition to Congress. It's entitled, "This 4/20, Let's Be Blunt About Justice."

Citing "racial disparities," the company says that it's high time to make a change.

"Between 2001 and 2010, there were more than 8 million pot arrests (88% for possession)," the company said in a statement. "And during that time, a Black person was 3.73 times more likely to be arrested for marijuana possession than a white person. Since then, in states that have legalized cannabis, arrests, as you’d expect, have gone down. Unfortunately, legalization hasn’t done anything to change the racial disparities."

The company notes that cities like San Francisco and Seattle are already doing it and are calling for Congress to take it national.

"We also love the approach taken by some big-city prosecutors: they’ve declared that they will no longer be prosecuting pot-possession cases. In some cities they’re even wiping old warrants and convictions from the books," the company wrote.

The company also shared a video on Twitter that focused on racial injustice in regards to marijuana convictions.

The petition currently has nearly 30,000 signatures. You can take a look at their statement here.