Black men and women in Wisconsin make up almost 7% of the state population but are roughly 40% of Wisconsin’s prison inmates. Lawmakers and neighborhood organizers at a press conference Wednesday presented a bill that would decriminalize modest amounts of marijuana. The aim: to decrease the quantity of men and women of colour in jail.
Just like with the legalization of marijuana, states surrounding Wisconsin have taken measures to also decriminalize possession of the drug. In Wisconsin, some Democratic lawmakers are now hoping to push the state in that path for modest amounts of weed — something 28 grams or much less.
Democratic Lt. Gov. Mandela Barnes is on board.
“Research shows in Wisconsin black men and women are 4 occasions a lot more probably than their white counterparts to be arrested for marijuana offense although also becoming a lot more probably to serve prison time for it,” Barnes explains. “Even in my house town of Milwaukee, there’s a study that points out how black men and women make up 72% of marijuana arrests in 40% of the population … in spite of marijuana use becoming even across the racial board.” [Read more at WUWM]