Tuesday, March 29, 2022
Student presentation exploring marijuana records and broader record clearing realities
Students in my Marijuana Law, Policy & Reform seminar are continuing to "take over" my class through presentations on the research topics of their choice. As I have mentioned, students first provide in this space background on their topic and links to some readings or relevant materials. This coming week's presentation is focused on record clearing, and here is how the student describes the topic and provided readings:
As we inch closer and closer to full marijuana legalization, we should all be asking an important question: what happens to the people with criminal records for doing the very things that will soon be legally a-ok?In recent years, record clearing has gained a lot of steam, and not just in the marijuana space. This is probably in large part because we know that a clear criminal record makes someone a more attractive job applicant, tenant, and more. Prior drug convictions may also prevent someone from accessing public housing and other benefits.As a primer to understanding the complex world of record clearing, I am delighted to invite Hannah Miller into our class. Ms. Miller is the Program Manager for Opportunity Port, a new initiative started by Columbus City Council last year that streamlines the record clearing process for individuals in central Ohio. Opportunity Port is not specific to clearing marijuana-related records. But, in Ohio, the record sealing process generally applies the same way to most types of non-violent offenses, whether they involved marijuana or not.I look forward to hosting Ms. Miller, as she will be able to provide a local twist on the story of record clearing for our class.
A study of recent state efforts to expunge or seal marijuana records: "Marijuana Legalization and Expungement in Early 2021"
A Vox article surveying importance of record sealing in the marijuana space: He was Arrested for Marijuana 17 years ago. Now It’s Legal. So Why Is He Still Guilty of a Crime?"
A local news story about Opportunity Port: "New Columbus Tool Sealing Criminal Convictions"
Link to Opportunity Port's website (please explore before class): Opportunity Port