Acknowledging the collateral consequences of cannabis convictions, a high profile member of Grenada’s Commission on Cannabis Legalisation and Regulation calls for pardons.
Anselm Clouden, representing the Ministry of Legal Affairs on the Commission, recommended that those under 25 and arrested for simple cannabis possession have their convictions pardoned by the Governor General.
Although regulatory change can be slow moving, Clouden is keen to right the wrongs of the past ahead of officially legalising cannabis in Grenada. If approved, this will be a notably progressive policy change driven by the 12-member Commission on Cannabis Legalisation and Regulation.
Clouden specifically cited the need to pardon those under 25, as this segment of society is the most likely to seek education overseas and require visas to work in other countries.
He conceded “having that stain on your record, especially [for] young people, inhibits or sometimes creates denial on such applications”.
In Grenada people are able to receive pardons from the Governor General, as allowed under Section 72 of the Constitution Act, citing the Prerogative of Mercy.
As long as the Prime Minister approves of such action, Clouden highlights that the “Governor General can pardon them so they become “virgo intacta” with a clean record, so they can apply for visas to travel and not have to say on those applications that they have been convicted of possession or simple possession.”
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