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"Spotlight On: Last Prisoner Project" Highlights Injustice Of Cannabis Prosecution

PBS Short Film highlights people currently in prison for cannabis.
09 July 2021
1 min read
Spotlight On: Last Prisoner Project Highlights Injustice Of Cannabis Prosecution

As cannabis continues to be legalized and annual sales reaching $21.6 billion in 2020, the short film exposes more than 40,000 people currently in jail for cannabis offenses. The short film highlights the injustice of cannabis prosecution, led by a nonprofit institution focused on cannabis criminal justice reform.

The Harms Caused By Cannabis Prohibition

Presented by a NY organization, the short film exposes the harms caused by cannabis prohibition, showing how prohibition affected the life of Stephanie Shepard, who was charged with a cannabis offense in 2009. Stephanie Shepard said she recalls when her lawyer said she was going to jail for 10 years, and the state of shock once reality set in.

The conviction had a huge toll on her life but, since her release from jail, S. Shepard has been working with the nonprofit organization to get life back on track, and claims that despite all the help she’s been getting still feels judged and nervous, when attending a job interview, for example.

Cannabis Prohibition and Pubic Safety

According to the filmmakers, over 50% of drug arrests in the United States are for cannabis possession and people of color are almost four times more likely to be arrested than white people and this is unfair as cannabis arrests can make it harder to get a job, get a scholarship and successfully reintroduce into society. Cannabis prohibition has never been about public safety, it has been used as a way to control certain populations and this has been destructive to certain people, so people involved in the short film hope that it helps the country evolve into a place where no one gets jail time for possessing cannabis.

09 July 2021