Marijuana: Florida State Students Approve Marijuana-Alcohol Penalty Equalization Initiative

Students at Florida State University (FSU) have voted for the second time to urge administrators to lower penalties for on-campus possession to be equal to those for on-campus underage drinking. Students at FSU passed a similar measure in 2006.

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FSU campus
In the October 15 election, 2,835 students voted on the equalization initiative. Some 1,850 voted in favor and 985 voted against, giving the measure 65% of the vote.

The initiative was sponsored by FSU NORML. Now, student leaders will use the vote to try to persuade campus administrators to heed the wishes of students.

FSU students have also signaled their support for broader marijuana law reform. In August, the FSU Student Government Association passed a resolution supporting Barney Frank's federal decriminalization bill.

"If the federal government decided that it was in their best interest to leave it up to the states to decide, it would leave the door open for us to further work on trying to get it decriminalized in Florida," said FSU NORML president John Mola.

The work by activists is paying off -- at least at the student politics level. FSU Sen. Forat Lufti, who is not a pro-legalization activist, said the votes showed that FSU students care deeply about marijuana policy.

"A lot of students feel strongly about the decriminalization of marijuana," Lutfi said. "As senators, it's our duty to represent the voice of all students. That was my main concern: to make sure their voice was heard," he said in reference to the August vote.

Permission to Reprint: This article is licensed under a modified Creative Commons Attribution license.
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