WASHINGTON - Cannabis advocates held a pop-up rally and even gave away joints inside the Wilson building lobby on Tuesday to demand change for the way marijuana is sold and distributed in D.C.
Advocates from the DC Cannabis Business Association and DCMJ say they are outraged by the increasing number of cannabis-related arrests and say there are limitations for D.C. residents operating legal cannabis businesses.
Advocates also say they are demanding immediate action by D.C. council and are calling for council members to pass legislation that opens up medical cannabis to home-based businesses and take off cannabis-related crimes from people's records under Initiative 71.
Initiative 71 allows adults to possess up to 2 ounces of cannabis and allows them to give up to an ounce away to other adults.
Advocates also ask for the repeal of the Harris Rider from the federal budget for the District of Columbia, which prevents the District Council from passing any laws that would reduce penalties for the opening of non-medical cannabis dispensaries.
Lisa Scott, a founding member of the DC Cannabis Business Association says D.C. government "is not doing enough to repair the records of thousands of its citizens who were caught up in the failed war on drugs."
Scott says these current regulations are limiting D.C. residents are impacting opportunities for D.C. residents, especially "hundreds, if not thousands, of African-American small business owners who want to contribute to the betterment of the District of Columbia."