Leading legal, social and racial justice groups are holding a free marijuana expungement clinic to help those convicted of low-level cannabis offenses clear their records in Newark next week.
The marijuana expungement clinic will be held Tuesday, September 14th, from 10 am to 6 pm at the Hilton Penn Station Hotel in Newark. Attendees will receive free legal assistance about the marijuana expungement application process.
“Why should some people have their lives ruined while others are getting rich in the industry?” said Co-Founder and Vice President of 420NJEvent Brendon Robinson, which is holding the event. “This clinic will give people an opportunity to have a life after cannabis. No longer will low-level cannabis crimes ruin someone’s life.”
Attorneys from the New Jersey law firm Brach Eichler will provide pro-bono legal services to assist with the marijuana expungement process for non-violent cannabis convictions.
“Marijuana laws have often disproportionately impacted communities of color. As New Jersey looks to establish its recreational marijuana market, there must be a focus on righting the societal wrongs that the prohibition of cannabis has created. We need more individuals, particularly Black and brown people, to understand the law and their rights, what it means, and how it can help them,” said the Co-Chair of the cannabis law practice at Brach Eichler Charles Gormally.
New Jersey voters overwhelmingly approved a referendum to legalize cannabis for adult-use use last November. In February, Governor Phil Murphy legalized dispensary cannabis sales and decriminalized street cannabis, ending arrests and fines for possession.
However, the process for marijuana expungement in the wake of the decriminalization of cannabis in New Jersey has not been clear.
The Need to Hold a Marijuana Expungement Clinic
The expungement clinic will be hosted by 420NJEvents, a Black-owned cannabis lifestyle brand, and sponsored by Brach Eichler LLC, the cannabis corporation Columbia Care, the cannabis corporation Apothecarium, REEForm New Jersey, and Minority Cannabis Academy. The expungement clinic will help people disproportionately impacted by the War on Drugs.
“People lives are still being negatively impacted by cannabis charges and convictions. They are being denied jobs and robbed of opportunities. This expungement clinic will help restore some of those opportunities,” said 420NJEvents President Stanley Okoro.
“If money is being made off the cannabis industry, we should ensure that revenue benefits the entire community, not a select few,” said the Co-Chair of the cannabis law practice at Brach Eichler John Fanburg. “As we’ve seen in our cannabis practice, the most important thing we can do is ensure equal access and transparency in the industry so that people can be involved in a fair way. It’s the right thing to do.”
“Inequities have plagued the cannabis industry since it first started being legalized in select states,” said Vice President of Public Policy at Columbia Care Ngiste Abebe. “We’re thrilled to be partnering with like-minded organizations for this clinic and hopefully more to come.”
“As part of our commitment to fight for social justice, The Apothecarium is honored to partner with 420NJEvents for the expungement clinic being held in Newark, NJ.,” said Michelle Moleski, Director of Physician and Community Outreach for TerrAscend NE. “We believe that community outreach activities such as this have a lasting impact, and we look forward to providing direct support to those negatively affected by the War on Drugs in our community.”