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Medical Marijuana

Chronicle AM: Second Australia SIJ Coming, DEA Adds Heroin Enforcement Teams, More... (10/30/17)

Medical Marijuana (STDW) - Mon, 10/30/2017 - 19:45

The Victoria state government has approved a safe injection site in Melbourne, a new report warns that high taxes on legal marijuana could push people to the black market, New Jersey adds some new qualifying conditions for medical marijuana use, and more.

[image:1 align:right caption:true]Marijuana Policy

Report: High Legal Pot Taxes Could Push Consumers to Black Market. California retail marijuana taxes, which could reach as high as 45% in some cases, could potentially push consumers out of legal pot shops and into the black market, according to a new report from the credit rating agency Fitch Ratings. "The existing black market for cannabis may prove a formidable competitor to legal markets if new taxes lead to higher prices than available from illicit sources," the report says.

Medical Marijuana

New Jersey Adds Five New Qualifying Conditions. The state's Medical Marijuana Review Panel has officially approved five new qualifying conditions for medical marijuana use. They are anxiety, chronic pain related to musculoskeletal disorders, migraines, chronic pain of visceral origin, and Tourette's Syndrome. The panel rejected adding chronic fatigue syndrome and asthma as qualifying conditions.

Heroin and Prescription Opioids

DEA Creates Six New Heroin Enforcement Teams. The DEA has announced the establishment of six new enforcement teams focused on heroin and fentanyl. The teams will operate in New Bedford, Massachusetts; Charleston, West Virginia; Cincinnati, Ohio; Cleveland, Ohio; Raleigh, North Carolina; and Long Island, New York. The DEA got funding in its Fiscal Year 2017 appropriations to pay for the teams.

Public Health Experts Issue Report With Comprehensive Recommendations for Opioid Crisis.
Experts from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in collaboration with the Clinton Foundation have issued a report with comprehensive recommendations for stemming the opioid crisis. Among its 10 priority recommendations are: expanded electronic opioid prescription monitoring, policies in line with CDC Opioid Prescribing Guidelines, clear guidance on opioid disposal and "take back" programs, increased federal funding for drug treatment in the most hard hit communities, and cheaper naloxone.

International

Taliban Now Making Heroin -- and Increased Profits. For years, Afghanistan's Taliban have profited from opium poppy production, using the proceeds to finance their war, but now, Afghan and Western officials say that more than half of Afghan opium is being processed in-country, and that is leading for increased profits for the Taliban, for whom the drug trade consists of about 60% of its income.

Australia to Get Second Safe Injection Site, in Melbourne. The Victoria state government cabinet has approved a safe injection site for the North Richmond area of Melbourne. It is set to open next year. At the same time, the state government is also moving to crack down on heroin traffickers by reducing the amounts of heroin needed to impose harsh sentences.

Categories: Medical Marijuana

CN AB: Column: Despite Fanfare, Medical Benefits Of Marijuana Remain

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Sat, 10/28/2017 - 07:00
Medicine Hat News, 28 Oct 2017 - Many Canadians can hardly wait for the day that the recreational use of marijuanabecomes legal. As a medical doctor, I'm far less enthusiastic. I worry about two things: The experimental nature of marijuana in medical practice and the public health consequences of legalized marijuana. Before you write me off as overly prudish or an anti-marijuana conservative, let me say out of the gate that I'm not opposed to legalized marijuana in principle - I'm just paying attention to the evidence, or rather, the lack of it. My concern is that as marijuanabecomes more easily available, Canadians may become more inclined to self-medicate with this so-called "miracle drug."
Categories: Medical Marijuana

CN AB: Former Cop Urges Caution Regarding Cannabis In The Workplace

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Sat, 10/28/2017 - 07:00
Medicine Hat News, 28 Oct 2017 - Ed Secondiak began his Friday lecture on cannabis in the workplace by cautioning against potential dangers of the soon-to-be-legalized substance. "We would consider marijuana a dangerous drug simply because impairment is not recognized by the individual or perhaps the person (working) with them," said Secondiak, a former drug enforcement RCMP officer who now works with ECS Safety.
Categories: Medical Marijuana

CN BC: Council Blowing Smoke For Provincial Government

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Fri, 10/27/2017 - 07:00
The Daily Courier, 27 Oct 2017 - COUNCIL BLOWING SMOKE FOR PROVINCIAL GOVERNMENT At a special council meeting, Tuesday city council lit up its marijuana advice for the provincial government. Mayor Doug Findlater and his council provided feedback for the ministry of Public Safety and Solicitor General on the legalization of non-medical marijuana. Council came up with these suggestions:
Categories: Medical Marijuana

Chronicle AM: Trump Declares Opioid Emergency, SF SIJ Could Come Soon, More... (10/26/17)

Medical Marijuana (STDW) - Thu, 10/26/2017 - 20:49

The president declares the opioid crisis an emergency, but not enough of one to actually need funding; lawmakers go after the DEA over West Virginia pain pill deliveries, a St. Louis alderman files a marijuana legalization measure, the US Sentencing Commission issues a report on mandatory minimums, and more.

[image:1 align:left caption:true]Marijuana Policy

St. Louis Ordinance Would End Local Marijuana Prohibition. Alderman Megan Green has filed an ordinance that would end enforcement of any laws that allow "the civil or criminal punishment for the use or possession of marijuana or marijuana paraphernalia against any individual or entity," with some specified exceptions. Under the bill, pot could be used, sold, and grown in the city. The bill gets a first reading Friday, and Green says she's confident it can pass in coming weeks. Stay tuned.

Medical Marijuana

Lawmakers Call for VA to Research Medical Marijuana for Veterans. A group of lawmakers who sit on the House Veterans' Affairs Committee wrote a letter Thursday to Veteran Affairs Secretary David Shulkin urging him to use his agency to research medical marijuana. The VA "is uniquely situated to pursue research on the impact of medical marijuana on veterans suffering from chronic pain and PTSD given its access to world class researchers, the population it serves, and its history of overseeing and producing research resulting in cutting-edge medical treatments," the lawmakers wrote. Shulkin has yet to respond.

Heroin and Prescription Opioids

Trump Declares Opioid Crisis a Public Health Emergency, But Provides No Funds. President Trump announced Thursday that he had directed the Department of Health and Human Services to declare a public health emergency around the opioid crisis. But he declined to declare a national emergency, which would have allowed for the rapid allocation of monies to address it. Trump's declaration carries no funding with it, but would allow some grant money to be used to combat opioid abuse.

Lawmakers Take DEA to Task Over Spread of Opioids. Members of the House Energy and Commerce Committee threatened to subpoena the DEA over its slow response to their questions about how wholesale drug distributors poured millions of opioid pain pills into West Virginia. Members said the committee had been waiting six months for answers from the DEA about which companies had sent nine million pills to the town of Kermit, WV (pop. 392), over a two-year period. Members did not express any concerns about how a crackdown on pain pill prescribing might impact chronic pain patients.

Harm Reduction

San Francisco Could See Safe Injection Sites Within a Year, Official Says. Safe injection sites in the city could be open in eight to 12 months if a proposal to create them gets approved, Department of Public Health Director Barbara Garcia told supervisors on Wednesday. Even if the plan was approved immediately, it would take time to obtain funding, establish protocols, hire and train staff, and set up the program, she said.

Sentencing

Sentencing Commission Issues Report on Mandatory Minimums. The US Sentencing Commission has issued a report on the use and impact of mandatory minimum sentencing for drug offenses. The report finds, among other things, that mandatory minimums continue to be imposed and result in long sentences in the federal system, but that they were being used less often last year. The report also noted that mandatory minimums may be applied more broadly than Congress intended, but that laws allows for departures from the harsh sentences "result in significantly reduced sentences when applied."

International

Colombia Will Move to Decriminalize Small-Time Coca Farming. The government will introduce legislation that would make the cultivation of up to just under ten acres of coca a non-punishable offense. More than 100,000 families earn a living from coca farming, with the average planting being less than an acre. This move would provide some breathing room for farmers caught between drug gangs on one hand and police on the other. The move was part of the peace deal agreed to with the leftist rebels of the FARC, but this is the first step toward actually implementing it.

Categories: Medical Marijuana

CN ON: Weed At Work Is Future Minefield For Bosses

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Thu, 10/26/2017 - 07:00
Metro, 26 Oct 2017 - Employers plan for workers using cannabis recreationally As Canada edges toward full legalization next year, businesses are trying to determine how to deal with employees' use of recreational cannabis.
Categories: Medical Marijuana

CN ON: Potential For Pot Crop Impacts Land Sale

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Thu, 10/26/2017 - 07:00
The Simcoe Reformer, 26 Oct 2017 - A vegetable farmer looking to sell a piece of land has been put in a bind as Norfolk council looks at rules for marijuana grow operations. Bill Nightingale Jr. of Nightingale Farms, a large scale producer of asparagus, beans, peppers among other crops, built a greenhouse on 215 Windham Road 10 North, Delhi last year with the aim of growing organic cucumbers.
Categories: Medical Marijuana

CN ON: Edu: Column: Say No To Weed On Campus

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Thu, 10/26/2017 - 07:00
The Silhouette, 26 Oct 2017 - The recent announcement of the smoking ban and the growing prominence of the Breathe Easy Campaign has fractured the McMaster community Some seem adamantly opposed to the legalization of weed and its association with an academic community, others feel that we should take a more open-minded perspective. The most interesting feedback were the students who conveyed a stance against excluding weed from the McMaster smoking ban. Given that Canada has made room for marijuana by legalizing it federally in Canada, making room for the substance on campus should also be considered.
Categories: Medical Marijuana

CN ON: Edu: Column: Say Yes To Weed On Campus

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Thu, 10/26/2017 - 07:00
The Silhouette, 26 Oct 2017 - The stigma needs to be addressed and I'm here to address it In light of a protest promoting medical marijuana on campus, we should reconsider our attitudes and understanding towards weed. The Breathe Easy campaign, on a provincial and national spectrum, seems to have a positive impression on certain audiences. However, on others such as myself, the campaign is not a positive one.
Categories: Medical Marijuana

Chronicle AM: Iran Restricts Death Penalty in Drug Cases, Belize MJ Decrim Move, More... (10/23/17)

Medical Marijuana (STDW) - Mon, 10/23/2017 - 20:59

Iran has approved dramatic changes in the use of the death penalty in drug cases, an Indiana county ends needle exchange and cites the Bible to do so, Jamaica issues its first marijuana business licenses, and more.

[image:1 align:right caption:true]Marijuana Policy

Colorado Credit Union Sues Federal Reserve Over Cannabis Banking. The Fourth Corner Credit Union has filed a lawsuit against the Federal Reserve Bank in Kansas City over its refusal to grant the business a master account because Fourth Corner wants to provide financial services to groups in the marijuana business. Fourth Corner received a state banking charter in 2014 and even altered its business plan to only serve marijuana advocacy groups -- not pot businesses -- but the Fed still refuses to issue a master account.

Medical Marijuana

Montana Scores $300,000 in Medical Marijuana Taxes. The state collected medical marijuana taxes at the rate of $100,000 a month for the three months ending in September, the Department of Revenue reported. The proceeds are coming from a 4% tax on provider's gross revenue. The tax went into effect on July 1.

Utah Poll Shows Continuing Strong Support for Medical Marijuana Initiative. A new Salt Lake Tribune/University of Utah Hinckley School of Politics poll has support for a 2018 medical marijuana initiative at 75%. That result mirrors a July poll that had 77% support.

Harm Reduction

Indiana County Ends Needle Exchange Program, Cites Biblical Morality. County commissioners in Lawrence County voted last week to end a needle exchange program, with commissioners citing the Bible and morality as reasons for doing so. "It was a moral issue with me. I had severe reservations that were going to keep me from approving that motion," County Commissioner Rodney Fish, who voted against the program, told NBC News. "I did not approach this decision lightly. I gave it a great deal of thought and prayer. My conclusion was that I could not support this program and be true to my principles and my beliefs." Before voting, Fish quoted a Bible verse about people turning from their "wicked ways."

International

Belize House Passes Marijuana Decriminalization. The House last Friday approved a marijuana decriminalization bill that would allow the possession of up to 10 grams of pot. It would also legalize industrial hemp. The bill now goes to the Senate.

Colombia Prosecutor General Calls for Reconsideration of Aerial Fumigation of Coca Crops. In an interview with the newspaper El Tiempo, Prosecutor General Nestor Humberto Martinez called on the government to consider resuming aerial spraying of coca groups with herbicides. The call comes amid rising concerns over the government's ability to rein in coca production in the wake of its peace treaty with the leftist rebels of the FARC.

Indonesia Drug Czar Threatens Philippines-Style Killings of Drug Dealers. National Narcotics Agency (BNN) head Commander General Budi Waseso said last Thursday that police should be prepared to shoot drug dealers on the spot. "People said that the BNN cannot shoot on the spot. Why not?" Waseso said, in remarks reported by the Jakarta Post. "Stern actions" are justified because "there are too few drug dealers who are dead, while they have killed thousands of people."

Iran Limits Death Penalty in Drug Cases. The Islamic Republic's Guardian Council last Wednesday approved amendments to the country's Law Against Drug Trafficking that will greatly reduce the imposition of the death penalty for drug offenses. In past years, Iran has executed hundreds of people each year for drug trafficking offenses, but the amendment limits imposition of the death penalty to drug lords, armed traffickers, people with significant prior convictions, and people who use children to sell drugs.

Jamaica Issues First Marijuana Licenses. The Cannabis Licensing Authority of Jamaica issued the first two licenses for marijuana businesses last Wednesday. One went to Everyting Oily Labs for processing, and the other went to Epican for cultivation. "Although it has taken some time to get to this historic occasion, we have remained committed to getting it right and to ensure that Jamaica's stake in the global medicinal cannabis industry is never compromised and remains sustainable," said Authority Chairwoman Hyacinth Lightbourne in a press release. "During the process, we have endeavored to remain in dialogue with our applicants every step of the way, and we are confident that they have satisfied the rigors of the regulations," she said.

Categories: Medical Marijuana

CN MB: Legal Pot Plants A Growing Worry

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Mon, 10/23/2017 - 07:00
Winnipeg Free Press, 23 Oct 2017 - Real estate agents are worried about damage to home interiors with the proliferation of legal medical marijuana grow-ops in residences, even before marijuana is legalized in Canada. Peter Squire, vice-president of the Winnipeg Realtors Association, said members of the Canadian Real Estate Association were in Ottawa last week to meet with federal MPs.
Categories: Medical Marijuana

Canada: Clearing The Air

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Mon, 10/23/2017 - 07:00
Globe and Mail, 23 Oct 2017 - With legalization on the horizon in Canada, dispensaries are marketing marijuana as a cure for what ails you - including cancer. Do the claims hold up? Adriana Barton takes a closer look at the science behind cancer and cannabis In a lab at the University of Nottingham in England, brain-cancer specialist Richard Grundy is growing cells from children's brain tumours to see if cannabidiol - a compound in marijuana - can kill them.
Categories: Medical Marijuana

CN ON: Alderville Pot Shop In Legal Grey Area

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Mon, 10/23/2017 - 07:00
The Peterborough Examiner, 23 Oct 2017 - ALDERVILLE - There are different opinions on whether a marijuana dispensary located on Alderville First Nation is legal. The Medicine Wheel Natural Healing - Indigenous Healing Through Medicinal Cannabis is located on County Road 45 in Alderville, north of Cobourg.
Categories: Medical Marijuana

CN ON: Pot Advocate Aims To Open Dispensary

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Mon, 10/23/2017 - 07:00
The Daily Press, 23 Oct 2017 - Neron is asking Town of Moonstone to amend its licensing bylaw to allow sale of marijuana. MOONSTONE - A long-time user and advocate of medical marijuana has revealed plans to open a dispensary in his home town of Moonbeam.
Categories: Medical Marijuana

CN ON: Trustees Want Pot Sales Kept Away From Schools

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Sat, 10/21/2017 - 07:00
Toronto Star, 21 Oct 2017 - Trustees at the Toronto District School Board want a say on the location of shops that sell marijuana to make sure they're "as far away from schools as possible." With legalization less than a year away, they're seeking assurances that the school board will be consulted in all discussions about regulations concerning retail stores and medicinal marijuana dispensaries in the city.
Categories: Medical Marijuana

CN ON: Holes Emerge In City's Crackdown On Marijuana

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Sat, 10/21/2017 - 07:00
Globe and Mail, 21 Oct 2017 - For 17 months, Toronto police and bylaw officers have been cracking down on illegal pot dispensaries, raiding more than 200 locations, laying hundreds of criminal charges and issuing thousands of dollars in fines. Their attack has been relentless, yet the city still has an estimated 65 shops open for business at any given time. The campaign, code-named Project Claudia, began with a headline-grabbing first round of raids in May, 2016, and has now cost millions of dollars in police, staff and court time.
Categories: Medical Marijuana

Chronicle AM: New Zealand to Vote on MJ Legalization, Peru Congress OKs MedMJ, More... (10/20/17)

Medical Marijuana (STDW) - Fri, 10/20/2017 - 21:11

A new doctors' group is calling on the medical community to be open to marijuana legalization, kratom activists file a FOIA on the DEA, New Zealand's new prime minister says she will hold a referendum on marijuana legalization, and more.

[image:1 align:left]Marijuana Policy

New Doctors' Group Advocates for Marijuana Legalization. A newly formed physicians' group is calling on organized medicine to be open to legalizing and regulating marijuana. Doctors for Cannabis Regulation includes as members former US Surgeon General Jocelyn Elders and former US Center for Substance Abuse Treatment Westley Clark.

Maine Governor Wants to Delay Legal Marijuana Sales. Gov. Paul LePage (R) has proposed that lawmakers delay recreational marijuana sales instead of trying to pass a legislative rewrite of the voter-approved 2016 legalization initiative. LePage is proposing pushing the sales date back to January 2019. Lawmakers have already pushed the sales date back to February 2018.

Heroin and Prescription Opioids

Trump's Vow to Deliver Emergency Opioid Proclamation Is News to His Advisors. When President Trump announced Monday he would deliver an emergency proclamation on the opioid crisis next week, he blindsided his advisors, who are now scrambling to actually develop a plan. Despite Trump's remarks, it is unclear how or if it will be done, when it will be announced, and whether there is permanent leadership in place to execute it. "They are not ready for this," a public health advocate told Politico, which reported that top officials were "stunned" by Trump's off-script remarks.

Kratom

Citing DEA "Shadow Campaign," Kratom Backers File FOIA Request. Charging that the DEA is involved in a "shadow campaign" against the herb, the American Kratom Association has filed a Freedom of Information Act request for all records of kratom-related communications between the DEA and state lawmakers, law enforcement officials, coroners, and medical examiners. The association believes a recent claim of a "kratom-related death" by a local coroner is "part of a larger behind-the-scenes push against kratom by the DEA in the wake of its decision last year to suspend an emergency scheduling push that would have effectively banned the legal botanical product," according to its press release.

Criminal Justice

In Speech to Oklahoma Sheriffs, Sessions Praises Asset Forfeiture, Denies Need for Sentencing Reform. Addressing the Oklahoma Sheriffs Association in Midway City Wednesday, Attorney General Sessions praised President Trump as a "law and order president," defended federal asset forfeiture, and denied that the country has a mass incarceration problem. "If you want to bring down our prison population, then we should bring down crime," Sessions said in prepared remarks.

International

Colombia Coca Farmers, Social Organization Call General Strike. Upset by the government's failure to fully implement peace accords signed with the leftist FARC rebels 11 months ago, dozens of groups, including the National Coordinator for Coca, Poppy, and Marijuana Growers; the National Coordinator of Communities and Afrodescendant Organization, and the National Coordinator of Indigenous Peoples have called an indefinite strike. "This national strike is to demand compliance with the agreement. We hope that the Government respects our right to protest, "said the spokesman of the National Association of Peasant Reserve Zones, Cesar Jerez, in a statement issued by Patriotic March.

New Zealand Will Hold Referendum on Marijuana Legalization. Incoming Prime Minister Jacinda Arden has said the country will hold a referendum on marijuana legalization at some point in the next three years. She has not taken a position on the issue herself, but said she wanted to hear the view of the public.

Peru Congress Passes Medical Marijuana Bill. The Congress approved a bill Thursday that would legalize medical marijuana in the Andean nation. The move has the support of President Pablo Kuczynski, who proposed it after a scandal erupted when police cracked down on a group of mothers making cannabis oil in a home factory to treat their epileptic children.

Categories: Medical Marijuana

CN ON: Mix Of Medicial And Illegal Pot Brings Fine

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Thu, 10/19/2017 - 07:00
The Observer, 19 Oct 2017 - After admitting the medicinal pot in his possession had been illegally supplemented by some non-medicinal pot, a Sarnia man again pleaded guilty Wednesday to drug possession - but to a different judge. These "additional facts" temporarily put to rest a legal conundrum and likely a Canadian first - whether a lawful prescription becomes unlawful due to use - that delayed a decision on the drug possession charge originally expected in August.
Categories: Medical Marijuana

CN BC: Pot Shop Cannabis Rejuvenates A Life

Cannabis - Medicinal (MAP) - Thu, 10/19/2017 - 07:00
The Georgia Straight, 19 Oct 2017 - John De Villa and his wife, Maxine, are afraid he'll lose access to the cannabis products that keep him seizure-free. The otherwise healthy software technician wasn't born with epilepsy, didn't drink or smoke, and hadn't taken as much as a Tylenol in decades.
Categories: Medical Marijuana

Medical Marijuana Update

Medical Marijuana (STDW) - Wed, 10/18/2017 - 21:06

The Justice Department concedes it cannot prosecute the Kettle Falls Five because of congressional bans on spending money to go after medical marijuana states, Arkansas regulators are swamped with grow and sales applications, and more.

[image:1 align:right caption:true]National

On Tuesday, the Justice Department dropped the Kettle Falls Five Case, Conceding It is Blocked from Prosecuting. The DOJ filed a motion to stay the case of the Kettle Falls Five, a group of Washington state medical marijuana patients and producers who had been pursued and prosecuted after a 2012 raid. In the filing, Justice Department officials conceded that an amendment barring the use of federal funds to go after medical marijuana in states where it is legal blocked them from proceeding with the case.

Arkansas

On Monday, state regulators said they were swamped with applications and may push licensing back to next year. Deluged with applications to grow and sell medical marijuana, the state Medical Marijuana Commission has set December 15 when it will start receiving applications, but says even that date could be pushed back as hundreds of applications come in. That means there's still no approximation of the data medical marijuana will actually be available on store shelves in the Razorback State.

Pennsylvania

Last Friday, the state issued its first medical marijuana grower licensee. The state Department of Health has approved Cresco Yeltrah's 40,000-plus-square-foot indoor grow operation, making it the first medical marijuana grow in the state to be approved. The planting of seeds should commence shortly, with the first crop ready in about four months.

[For extensive information about the medical marijuana debate, presented in a neutral format, visit MedicalMarijuana.ProCon.org.]

Categories: Medical Marijuana
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