Home>Articles>Murphy ‘open-minded’ to more drug decriminalizations

Psilocybin mushrooms, known as “magic mushrooms." Photo: James Hilder.

Murphy ‘open-minded’ to more drug decriminalizations

By Nikita Biryukov, March 22 2021 3:51 pm

Gov. Phil Murphy said he was willing to consider decriminalizing other drugs after the state finally completed its push to legalize marijuana, though it’s not clear he’ll take up the cause anytime soon.

“I’m open-minded to hear their arguments,” Murphy said at Monday’s virus briefing. “But I think we’ve taken a big step, and I want to get that step embedded as my personal opinion and get this right before we consider any further steps.”

After years of stymied efforts, Murphy last month signed bills legalizing and decriminalizing marijuana use. The state is still in the process of standing up its legal cannabis market, and that process is unlikely to be finished before August.

The push to decriminalize other drugs is backed by Abolish the Drug War New Jersey, a coalition founded by a bevy of progressive groups, including New Jersey Policy Perspective and the state branch of the ACLU.

In February, the coalition called for the state to decriminalize all drugs and redirect funds used on policing and incarceration back to communities.

That campaign coincided with the signing of a bill lowering penalties for possession of hallucinogenic mushrooms.

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