May 272016
 May 27, 2016
Toronto Police Crack Down On Medical Marijuana Dispensaries

Yesterday was a sad day in Toronto as Toronto Police cracked down on several medical marijuana dispensaries as part of ‘Project Claudia.’ While it is unknown how many dispensaries were raided, I saw many reports on social media that put the number as high as 40. Those reports are from social media, so take the number for what you will, but the fact of the matter is that a very large number of dispensaries were raided, which is a huge waste of law enforcement resources. Per the Toronto Sun: Giant bags of weed locked in police cruisers, young people in handcuffs

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May 102016
 May 10, 2016
Thursday Webinar: Connecting The War On Drugs To The War On Immigrants

The Drug Policy Alliance, Immigrant Legal Resource Center, and Human Rights Watch invite you to join a free webinar on Thursday, May 12, 2016 at 11 am Pacific / 12 pm Mountain / 1 pm Central / 2 pm Eastern. The drug war has increasingly become a war against immigrant communities.  Much as the drug war drives mass incarceration, it is also a major driver of mass deportation.  Over a quarter of a million people have been deported from the U.S. after convictions for drug offenses since 2007. Unfortunately, while drug diversion programs are designed to help drug offenders avoid

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May 072016
 May 7, 2016
Does Hemp Growing/Cultivation Affect Marijuana Growing/Cultivation Via Cross Pollination?

A lot of marijuana growers fear hemp cultivation because they fear that cross pollination via nearby help cultivation will affect a marijuana grower’s crop. But is  that true? A recent article by Capitol Press suggests otherwise: Marijuana growers fear hemp pollen because they want to avoid the formation of seeds in their crop, which decreases the quality and volume of psychoactive flowers. As part of his experiment, Norton grew numerous hemp plants in a greenhouse that also contained several marijuana plants. In Oregon, recreational use of the psychoactive crop became legal this year and its medical cultivation has been legal since

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May 042016
 May 4, 2016
2015 Annual Retail Sales For Hemp Products Estimated At $573 Million

The Hemp Industries Association (HIA), a non-profit trade association consisting of hundreds of hemp businesses, has released final estimates of the size of the 2015 U.S. retail market for hemp products. Data from market research supports an estimate of total retail sales of hemp food, supplements and body care products in the United States at $283 million. Sales of popular hemp items like non-dairy milk, shelled seed, soaps and lotions have continued to increase, complemented by successful hemp cultivation pilot programs in several states, and increasing grassroots pressure to allow hemp to be grown domestically on a commercial scale once

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May 022016
 May 2, 2016
Anthony Wile: Post-UNGASS 2016, Questions Remain As Countries Forge Individual Paths

The UN General Assembly Special Session on the World Drug Problem, UNGASS 2016, wrapped up last week with what Human Rights Watch referred to as “a missed opportunity to end the war on drugs.” Rather than replacing the longstanding strategy of drug eradication through criminalization with a sensible public health approach to drug use, the Final Outcome Document—agreed to by consensus but not without considerable protest—perpetuates the prohibition policy. President Juan Manuel Santos of Colombia said last week in an interview with The Guardian, “It’s time to leave ideologies behind and embrace the evidence, and the evidence points to the

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Apr 292016
 April 29, 2016
Human Rights Tribunal: Victoria Officer Has The Right To Express Beliefs Against The Failed War On Drugs

I am a big believer in freedom of expression. In America it’s often referred to as a First Amendment right, but even outside of America, people should obviously be allowed to express themselves too. There was a big case involving freedom of expression and an officer in Victoria (BC) who was speaking out against the failed drug war as a member of Law Enforcement Against Prohibition (LEAP). I’m happy to say that a human rights tribunal ruled in favor of the officer (and in favor of free expression!). Below is more information, via a message that I received from LEAP:

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Apr 212016
 April 21, 2016
Blumenauer On UN Special Session On Drug Policy: We Need A More Just And Compassionate Approach

This week, Representative Earl Blumenauer (OR-03) joined leaders from around the world in New York at the 2016 United Nations General Assembly Special Session (UNGASS) on the World Drug Problem. Representative Blumenauer, who attended the opening day’s events as a Congressional observer, released the following statement on the Session. “There is no better time than now for world leaders to gather to reevaluate international drug policy. The War on Drugs has failed. Instead of escalating the horrific violence of this war, we need a more just and compassionate approach that focuses on public health and harm reduction, rather than punishing

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Apr 192016
 April 19, 2016
United Nations Orders Security To Confiscate Copies Of Open Letter Calling For End To Global Drug War

On the opening day of the 2016 United Nations General Assembly Special Session (UNGASS) on the World Drug Problem, the Drug Policy Alliance (DPA) gathered more than 60 performers dressed in costumes from the era of U.S. alcohol prohibition to greet attendees at the entrance to the United Nations and hand them copies of the “Post-Prohibition Times,” a newspaper printout of a letter to UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon urging him to set the stage “for real reform of global drug control policy.” UN Security was apparently ordered to confiscate the letter, and attendees were ordered to hand over their copies

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Apr 182016
 April 18, 2016
Today: Students Rally Outside United Nations Drug War Meeting

About 200 students and youth allies will demonstrate outside of a high-level United Nations meeting on the global war on drugs in New York tonight. They are distressed that youth and other anti-prohibition voices have been ignored by world leaders, many of whom seem set on continuing the same criminalization-based approaches that have failed for decades. The activists will stage performance art pieces, including slam poetry readings. Visual art depicting the harms of drug prohibition, from as far away as Afghanistan and Eastern Europe, will be displayed, and students will give short soapbox speeches to make their voices heard. The

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Apr 172016
 April 17, 2016
Students To Rally Outside United Nations Meeting On Global Drug War

About 200 students and youth allies will demonstrate outside of a high-level United Nations meeting on the global war on drugs in New York this Monday. They are distressed that youth and other anti-prohibition voices have been ignored by world leaders, many of whom seem set on continuing the same criminalization-based approaches that have failed for decades. The activists will stage performance art pieces, including slam poetry readings. Visual art depicting the harms of drug prohibition, from as far away as Afghanistan and Eastern Europe, will be displayed, and students will give short soapbox speeches to make their voices heard.

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