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Mary Moriarty and Ilhan Omar discuss impact of marijuana legalization, MPD consent decree

At a panel discussion on marijuana legalization hosted by Hennepin County Attorney Mary Moriarty and Rep. Ilhan Omar, much of the conversation focused on how reforms imposed upon the Minneapolis Police Department will also impact changes to come.

The event Wednesday at the University of Minnesota's Humphrey School during welcome week was attended by a dozen students and community members more than a month after the Aug. 1 decriminalization of recreational marijuana in Minnesota. Several of them asked questions - most were prepared ahead of time and presented by Omar to Moriarty, Rep. Cedrick Frazier and longtime cannabis legalization advocate Leili Fatehi.

Panelists all underscored the lasting harm of the war on drugs, mass incarceration and disproportionate impact on communities of color despite equal rates of cannabis use among white and Black Minnesotans. The collateral consequences of being arrested and charged for cannabis spans housing and employment.


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