Cannabis has rapidly entered mainstream U.S. culture over the past several years. Thirty-seven states have medical use laws on the books, and eighteen of them plus the District of Columbia allow adults to legally consume cannabis.
However, immigrants face severe consequences including deportation if they are caught using cannabis. Even legal residents who hold green cards can be barred from returning to the U.S. or naturalizing for at least five years if found to have consumed the plant.
The conflict between state and federal law has consequential implications for non-citizens. However, a new bill may change this inequity once and for all.
The Marijuana Opportunity Reinvestment and Expungement (MORE) Act passed by the House on April 1, 2022, would clear all cannabis-related convictions if passed by the Senate and signed by the president.
If passed, the law would also remove cannabis from the Federal controlled substance list, thus eliminating immigration penalties for cannabis consumption and investments moving forward.
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