This past November, Marylanders voted in favor of a constitutional amendment that would legalize the use and possession of marijuana by people twenty-one years of age or older. The new law will go into effect on July 1st of this year.
Following the referendum, the University of Maryland quickly announced that the prohibition of marijuana on their campus would go unchanged. Goucher’s policies will parallel this stance, according to Erik Thompson, Vice President of Campus Operations.
“In regards to our willingness to change the policy, [the Office of Campus Operations] and the Office of Public Safety are not aware of any plan to change the policy on [marijuana usage],” said Thompson.
Despite legalization in 20 states, Washington, D.C., and Guam, cannabis remains illegal under federal law and is still considered a Schedule 1 controlled substance. This means that if Goucher eased its marijuana policy it could jeopardize the federal funding that the college relies on, a risk that the administration is not willing to take.
“It’s probably a challenge a lot of schools are going through. Especially the ones that are reliant on federal funding, like we are,” Thompson noted.
The constitutional amendment allows citizens who are 21 years or older to possess up to 1.5 ounces of marijuana and will expunge criminal records where marijuana possession was the only charge, according to the Maryland Medical Cannabis Commission. The referendum passed in November with a 67% majority voting in favor.
Feature Image of cannabis plant courtesy of Adobe Stock