A federal lawsuit is being filed in the case of Santa Ana police officers who engaged in inappropriate behavior during raids of medical marijuana collectives. The officers were seen on hidden camera footage eating cannabis-infused edibles and threatening to kick a wheelchair-bound, legally blind dispensary volunteer.
The Law Office of Matthew Pappas, The Human Solution International, the Law Office of Anthony Curiale and The Swain Law Office will hold a press conference on Friday, July 3, 1:30 p.m. at the Marriott Live, located at 900 W. Olympic Blvd. in Los Angeles.
Attorney Pappas and retired L.A.P.D. Deputy Chief Steve Downing will discuss additional video of Santa Ana officers engaged in inappropriate behavior during raids of medical marijuana collectives and will provide an update on evidence of political corruption related to Santa Ana's medical marijuana ordinance and lottery.
Patient Marla James will show a new electric wheelchair paid for and provided to her by a cannabis oil company in Colorado after people working for the company watched video of the May 26 Sky High collective raid in Santa Ana. Thereafter, attorneys Anthony Curiale, James Kajtoch and Stefan Borst-Censullo will discuss a multi-million dollar state claim for damages filed on behalf of patients attacked during April and May raids in Santa Ana.
In addition, the Swain Law Office will announce the filing of a federal civil rights lawsuit against the Kansas Department for Children and Families and State of Kansas.
LEAD Established Unique Collaboration Among Law Enforcement, Human Service Agencies, Business Leaders, and Community Members to Produce Nearly 60% Reduction in Recidivism in Seattle
Wednesday: Convening Hosted by Major Foundations and Seattle Police Department
Thursday: Convening Co-Hosted by Major Foundations and The White House
This week, government officials and community leaders from more than 30 city, county and state jurisdictions will gather to discuss an innovative program that brings together diverse stakeholders seeking to achieve better outcomes in public health and safety by diverting people from jail to services.
The program, known as Law Enforcement Assisted Diversion, or LEAD, was pioneered in Seattle. Under LEAD, police divert individuals who commit low-level drug offenses to harm reduction based case management services. An independent evaluation found that it reduced the likelihood of reoffending by nearly 60 percent compared to a control group that went through the criminal justice system “as usual.”
LEAD’s successes and positive evaluations have sparked widespread attention and interest, especially in a moment when the police role in dealing with “quality of life” issues is controversial and the way forward after the War On Drugs is uncertain.
The California Cannabis Hemp Initiative 2016 (CCHI 2016) and ALOTOFFUN Productions invites everyone to a free concert and political rally at MLK Civic Center Park in Berkeley, California, on Saturday, July 11 from 11:30 AM to 7 PM.
This event will be the official kick-off of the CCHI 2016 campaign to thoroughly end Cannabis Hemp prohibition in California. The organization is seeking backing and volunteers to help with this effort.
This special event continues the effort to mobilize and inform the public about qualifying the CCHI 2016 for the Nov. 8, 2016 California ballot.
This special informational event is being held on Saturday, July 11, from 11:30 AM to 7PM. For more info: www.rallyforcchi2016.com
The CCHI 2016 signature drive will begin begin in late Fall 2015 in which the CCHI 2016 will have 180 days to gather 600,000 signatures from registered Californian voters to qualify for the Nov 8, 2016 ballot.
Full text of the CCHI can be found at:
This event is free and donations are kindly accepted.
Musical acts Include: psychedelic rock, reggae, Grateful Dead, soul and funk.
Legendary SF 60's band, Sopworth Camel will headline with Gigantis, Island of Black and White, Clear Conscience and many other musical guests participating. For a complete list: www.rallyforcchi2016.com.
Speakers in support of qualifying the CCHI for the 2016 ballot include:
Ross Mirkarimi: Sheriff of San Francisco
Longtime proponent of Cannabis legalization, is scheduled to speak between 3-4 p.m (schedule permitting).
Interview with DPA’s asha bandele on What Television Can and Can’t Tell Us About Women, the Drug War and Mass Incarceration
Piper Kerman, author of the memoir Orange is the New Black: My Year in a Women’s Prison, joined the Drug Policy Alliance’s asha bandele for a discussion on mass incarceration, women affected by the failed Drug War, and how television and media have approached these issues.
Piper’s book has been adapted into an Emmy and Peabody Award-winning original series for Netflix that serves as an entertaining and enlightening portrayal of her experience being incarcerated. She has been an influential force in revealing the injustices present in our criminal justice system while shining a humane light on people in prison.
Women are one of the fastest-growing segments of the prison population. Between 1980 and 2010, the number of women in state and federal prisons grew by an incredible 646 percent.
An estimated 61 percent of women in state prison and 56 percent of women in federal prison are mothers of minor children. Two-thirds of these parents are incarcerated for non-violent offenses, a substantial proportion of which are drug law violations.
Photo of Piper Kerman: University of North Carolina Wilmington
Studio McDermott, Portland-based film studio,on Thursday announced their Kickstarter project to assist in funding "Oregon: The State of Cannabis," an in-depth look at Oregon's burgeoning cannabis industry and the pioneers behind it.
Fueled by the successful passage of Oregon's Measure 91 in 2014, the filmmakers at Studio McDermott have already logged over 120 interviews with some of the most important players in the newly legal cannabis industry. Their hope is to preserve the history of the pioneers who are creating the legal cannabis industry.
"From the basement of an old school cultivators to the deep pockets of big business, a completely new market is emerging," said Max McDermott, cinematographer and editor at Studio McDermott. "When you witness the birth of an industry, you see how quickly things have to move in order to be successful."
"Cannabis legalization will impact all Oregonians," said Michael McDermott, the award-winning director of photography and co-founder of Studio McDermott. "Oregon: The State of Cannabis is capturing a moment in history that would otherwise be lost."
Having already poured hundreds of man-hours and resources into this passion project, the filmmakers at Studio McDermott are now looking to the public to help fund the remaining research and post-production expenses.
Top Experts in Policy, Science and Regulation Discuss the Public Health, Social Justice and Environmental Issues Related to Marijuana Legalization
In an effort to educate the public and discuss pressing issues related to the legalization of marijuana in California in 2016, the Drug Policy Alliance held three symposia, each focusing on a different aspect of marijuana regulation. Videos from those symposia are now available online to view for free.
The first symposia, held in Los Angeles, addressed issues related to marijuana use and public health. Speakers included Alison Holcomb from the ACLU, Tista Ghosh from the Colorado Department of Public Health and the environment, and Rep. Jonathan Singer from Colorado. The goal of this symposium was to address concerns related to how marijuana legalization might impact road safety, teen drug use and criminal activity. This symposium can be viewed in its entirety or by individual speaker here.
The National Cannabis Patients Wall, a nonprofit advocacy organization working to humanize and change medical marijuana laws founded in 2014 in Tennessee, now reaches 40 countries around the world and has more than 17,000 members, organizers announced on Tuesday.
"We endeavor to help patients find support, encourage and support activism while educating the public about medical cannabis and its advantages, and raising funds to build display walls to represent patients from every state," explained NCPW founder Dana Arvidson of Nashville, Tennesseee.
“The National Cannabis Patient's Wall not only signifies our solidarity as patients in need of a safer and effective alternative to harsh pharmaceuticals, but also the barriers we must overcome, our current State and Federal laws, which keep us from the medicine we desire and need," Arvidson said.
Arvidson said the group, which maintains a prominent social media presence including on Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, and Google+, aims to help patients in every state and country reverse the prohibition of cannabis this year, "and to end the needless suffering, before more people die."
"We work daily to assist the repeal of marijuana prohibition, opening the door to common sense regulation," Arvidson said.
According to Arvidson, one of the best parts of NCPW is letting patients know they aren't facing illness and often legal persecution all alone.
"We provide patients with a place to gather with others who feel the same way," she said. "It truly helps when a patient knows they are not along in their struggle.
After her son was killed by the Los Angeles Police Department, Susan Burton medicated her grief with alcohol and drugs. Instead of receiving the support and services she needed, she cycled in an out of the criminal justice system for nearly 15 years.
In 1998, Susan gained her freedom and sobriety and founded A New Way of Life Reentry Project. Named a CNN Hero in 2010, Susan’s organization provides support and resources for women recently released from prison.
The Drug Policy Alliance (DPA) works to end the Drug War by supporting organizations like A New Way of Life. Susan’s video is the second installment of a new video series, "Voices from the Front Lines of the Drug War," chronicling the people and organizations addressing the worst harms of the Drug War and creating new policies based in science, compassion, health and human rights.
Here is the direct link to the video on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0UjR_8nAURA
What do you get when you mix a medical marijuana activist, now a federal prisoner of the War On Marijuana, together with a federal white collar prisoner who was once a narcotics officer and a medical marijuana activist outside of prison together into a creative stew and simmer for 18 months? How about slammerbooks.com, an enterprise that creates genuine opportunity for thousands of current and former prisoners, and promotes justice, drug war and prison reform!
"Slammerbooks.com was created to show that prisoners can be a force for positive change in the law, justice and in the way offenders are rehabilitated," reads a Thursday press release. "Slammerbooks.com achieves this goal through showcasing the literary talent of prisoners."
Slammerbooks.com is the brainchild of Dustin Costa, a former Marine, union organizer and president, and medical marijuana/cannabis reform activist and Jack Straw, a white collar prisoner and former head of a major drug task force in the Midwest. They took their vision to Joe Grumbine, creator of the The Human Solution, a medical marijuana court support non-profit. Grumbine has now turned their vision into a reality with the creation of slammerbooks.com
Slammerbooks.com launched on April 18 with a half-dozen books by prisoners now being developed for publishing. Since launching, Slammerbooks.com has already received nearly a hundred inquiries from prisoners seeking to have their books published. "As more prisoners learn about us, that number will grow into the thousands," the company's press release predicts.
"From buds to dabs in 30 seconds"... is it too good to be true? In their most recent podcast episode, Ganjapreneur.com, a website dedicated to cannabis industry news and culture, investigates the origins and rapid growth of a new hashish manufacturing process known as "Rosin Tech."
The interview, which is hosted by Shango Los of the Vashon Island Marijuana Entrepreneurs Alliance (VIMEA), features Jeff Church, a hashish and medical cannabis expert and the founder of ThincPure, a Washington State medical cannabis extracts manufacturer.
In the interview, Church (also known as "Reverend Cannabis") describes how Rosin Tech came onto the scene in the medical cannabis world and how it has spread rapidly, largely due to videos and photos on Instagram, originating with a user named "Soilgrown." He also describes how it has quickly disrupted the cannabis extracts market, due to the fact that it is so inexpensive and accessible for medical cannabis patients.
Describing how the process works, he said "Basically what it is, is you take a piece of silicon-coated parchment paper, baking paper, and fold it in half and you put a piece of flower in there. Soilgrown’s original method was to take a flat iron which is just your basic hair straightener, $20 or less [...] but you basically just, you’ve got your bud in between a parchment and you squeeze it with this hot iron."
The result, Church said, can be on par with hash produced by highly specialized and expensive hydrocarbon extraction technology.
By Steve Elliott
Paul McCartney presumably isn't singing "Let Me Roll It" to his grandkids after saying in an interview that he's given up marijuana "to set an example" to the youngsters.
"I don't do it anymore," McCartney, 72, said, two weeks shy of his 73rd birthday. "Why? The truth is I don't really want to set [a bad] example to my kids and grandkids. It's now a parent thing."
McCartney has been busted for weed numerous times over the years, first in Sweden in 1972, and also including a nine-day jail stay after getting caught with nearly half a pound in Japan in 1980 and again in 1984 in Barbados.
"Back then I was just some guy around London having a ball, and the kids were little so I’d just try and keep it out of their faces," McCartney said. "Instead of smoking a spliff I’ll now have a glass of red wine or a nice margarita. The last time I smoked was a long time ago."
That's a puzzling statement, since it's widely known that marijuana is safer than alcohol.
As the marijuana legalization movement has gained momentum in Washington, Colorado, Oregon, Alaska, and other states, the cannabis industry has increasingly been referred to as a potential opportunity for legitimate start-ups and businesses. Dan Humiston, founder of the International Cannabis Association, recently discussed how his organization helps aspiring cannabis entrepreneurs in an interview with Ganjapreneur.com, a cannabis industry and business news website.
In the interview, Humiston discusses how he first became involved in the cannabis industry, and why he decided to leave a successful career as a business owner to do so.
"In 1985 I opened my first tanning salon and over the next 30 years I grew my chain Tanning Bed Inc. to the largest chain in New York and one of the largest chains in the country," Humiston explained. "In the mid 2000s, tanning industry sales started to fall and by the end of the decade it was apparent that I needed to find ways to reduce or re-purpose the space of my stores which were over 4,000 square feet.
"In 2012 I saw a 60 Minutes report about the cannabis industry and started trying to figure out how divide my tanning salons into tanning salons and dispensaries."
Popular Festival Has Track Record of Success in Keeping Attendees Safe
The California-based Lightning in a Bottle festival is breaking new ground in the United States by taking a comprehensive harm reduction approach to drug use at its event. It is the only festival in the U.S. to offer both peer-led drug education and mental health services onsite, communicate about those services to its attendees, and evaluate their effectiveness post-event.
The festival, set to take place this Memorial Day weekend (May 21-25) at the San Antonio Recreation Area in Bradley, California, offers harm reduction services through the organizations DanceSafe and the Zendo Project.
DanceSafe is a public health organization working since 1998 mostly within the electronic dance music community to promote non-judgmental health and safety information, ranging from safer sex and “protect your hearing” resources to straightforward drug education that explains drug effects and safer use practices honestly. The Zendo Project is a group of trained therapists and volunteers who assist festivalgoers undergoing a difficult psychological experience, whether drug-related or not. They set up a separate “safe space” apart from main festival areas, and often work in tandem with onsite medical teams.
Weed Flirt, a cannabis friendly online dating website for adults 21 years and older, is now open to membership in the USA. The website is accessible from browsers on desktops, laptops, tablets and mobile phones.
“Marijuana use is coming out of the closet and into the mainstream as medical and recreational marijuana use laws are enacted across the United States and other countries," said Weed Flirt founder A.N. Todd. "Marijuana users have long struggled when it comes to finding a partner that doesn’t freak out when the question of cannabis use comes up.
"On Weed Flirt we are encouraging marijuana users and non-users who are marijuana friendly to come together in a progressive dating community,” Todd said.
“Weed Flirt is for laid back people who don’t mind if their potential partner uses marijuana. It’s a progressive service," Todd ssaid. "It’s not for you if you are a bigot, racist, juice head, needle junkie, wacko, extremist or simply don’t accept cannabis as a cure.”
Members create profiles in which they can post and update photos, video and audio clips.
Search is by age, sex, city and state as well as by geographic location or current proximity. Communication is by private message as well as instant online chat.
In a major change to what’s currently on offer by online dating services, Weed Flirt is supporting groups. For instance you might join the San Francisco Group and meet other singles offline.
What’s Next for the Medical Marijuana Revolution?
Over the last two years Dr. Sanjay Gupta’s reporting has been truly groundbreaking in mainstreaming the benefits of medical marijuana. Dr. Gupta has brought stories of everyday Americans that obtain essential benefits from medical marijuana products into the living rooms of millions of Americans.
“Watching CNN’s 'Weed' was the first time many Americans saw everyday people benefiting from medical marijuana,” said Steph Sherer, executive director of Americans for Safe Access (ASA). “Seeing how much good medical marijuana can do has lead to an outgrowth in activism that has helped create new laws at the state level and is laying the foundation for important federal legislation.”
On April 19, CNN will premiere the third installment of their documentary series on medical marijuana Weed 3, documenting the ongoing developments in what Dr. Gupta has declared a “medical marijuana revolution.” The following day -- on April 20, at 7 pm EST-- ASA will host a Google Hangout to discuss the documentary and the issues it examines.
What: Google Hangout on the medical marijuana revolution and issues raised in Sanjay Gupta's Weed 3.
Featuring: ASA Executive Director Steph Sherer, PA State Senator Mike Folmer (invited), Jahan Marcu Ph.D, Matt Kahl, U.S. combat veteran and activist with Grow for Vets and Weed 3 participant Dr. Sue Sisley.