How 1.2 million marijuana arrests will shape New York’s legal market

Published November 24, 2023


Henry-Louis Taylor Jr. is quoted in a New York Times article about how a new map illustrating 42 years of marijuana arrests documents the way New York disproportionately targeted working-class, Black and Hispanic people for decades. With New York's legalization of weed in 2021, efforts are underway to address these disparities. New York State has created an interactive map based on 1.2 million marijuana arrests to guide the allocation of licenses, aiming for half to go to applicants from the most impacted neighborhoods. Taylor notes that besides serving as a guide, the map will help determine whether business and job opportunities in the cannabis industry are flowing to where they’re needed the most. It will also be useful for assessing whether future reinvestment initiatives, like job training and health care programs, make a meaningful difference. “We’re going to be able to see whether or not, and to what extent, these communities are going to benefit from the legalization of marijuana,” he said. “So I think this is hugely important and significant.”

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