The US Department of Justice has launched a process to clarify the removal of federal criminal records by President Joe Biden last year. From now on, people who have been convicted of cannabis possession will be able to request a certificate online, showing that these criminal records have been expunged and they will no longer be counted in the city’s public criminal records.
Although the deletion of records on cannabis possession convictions was made automatic, reform groups insisted that the administration make a method available to those affected to obtain a certificate. According to Marijuana Momentum, groups have asked for the creation of certificates as a way to guarantee that people with convictions for which they have been pardoned will not have to prove any difficulty and will not face barriers when accessing work and housing.
Last October, Biden issued a pardon to all people with a federal cannabis possession conviction, and asked state officials to do the same for state-level convictions. The president also ordered a review of the level of prohibition that applies to cannabis. Although the measure was celebrated, its scope is limited, since most of these convictions occur at the state, non-federal level, and exclude people with convictions for growing or selling cannabis, as well as all immigrants.
“Those who were given the date of October 6, 2022 are eligible for the amnesty bill […] To do this, the applicant must have been charged or convicted of simple possession of marijuana in federal court or a DC Superior Court, and the applicant must have been lawfully in the United States at the time of the offense, as a citizen of the United States. permanent resident of the law,” the Department of Justice said, cited by Marijuana Moment, also declaring that “those convicted of marijuana offenses are not eligible for state parole.”