Detroit the Latest to Decriminalize Magic Mushrooms

It’s definitely becoming a trend that can’t be ignored. Individual locations in the US are passing legislation to legalize and decriminalize magic mushrooms, and other entheogenic plants. Newest is Detroit, which passed a voter measure to decriminalize magic mushrooms in late 2021.

The Detroit measure to decriminalize magic mushrooms makes psychedelics that much more mainstream. A federal legalization probably won’t be until after cannabis is legalized though. Remember to subscribe to The Psychedelics Weekly Newsletter for more articles like this one and all the latest, most exciting industry news. And save big on Delta 8Delta 9 THCDelta-10THCOTHCVTHCP & HHC products by checking out our “Best-of” lists!


What’s the news?

On Tuesday November 2nd, 2021, Detroit voters passed Proposal E, to decriminalize magic mushrooms and other entheogenic plants. The definition of entheogen, is “a psychoactive, hallucinogenic substance or preparation (such as psilocybin or ayahuasca) especially when derived from plants or fungi and used in religious, spiritual, or ritualistic contexts.”

The measure was passed with 61% of voters in favor, and 39% against. Included in the ‘in favor’ category was mayor Mike Duggan, who also won re-election that day. Said Michigan Michigan State Sen. Adam Hollier at the news: “The war on drugs was a war on Black and brown communities and it’s good to see Black communities pushing back.”

The ballot measure stated that the change would amend the city’s code to “decriminalize to the fullest extent permitted under Michigan law the personal possession and therapeutic use of Entheogenic Plants by adults and make the personal possession and therapeutic use of Entheogenic Plants by adults the city’s lowest law-enforcement priority.”

Detroit referendum

As a decriminalization measure, and not a legalization, though the new mandate means the ability to posses these compounds within the city limits without it being a priority for law enforcement, no legalized commercial market was instituted in any form, medical or recreational. Though this effects many entheogenic plants, the main ones included are magic mushrooms, ibogaine, ayahuasca, and mescaline. 

Michigan at the forefront of psychedelics legalization

Detroit and its new policy to decriminalize magic mushrooms is just part of what’s going on in Michigan. Michigan certainly isn’t the first state to propose legislation for psychedelic decriminalization/legalization, but it is most definitely a front-runner in the fight to get these compounds approved in some way legally, with several moves putting it at the front of the current race.

Much of this has to do with SB 631 which was introduced on September 3rd, 2021. This bill would not only decriminalize psychedelic compounds, but actually legalize them statewide, making it the first state (along with California, which has its own bill in the works) to allow for recreational use of psychedelic compounds. The bill has been sitting in the Committee on Judiciary and Public Safety since the summer, so how much progress there will be, or when, is hard to say. However, the bill is still alive.

If it were to actually be passed, it would legalize the cultivation, delivery, creation, possession, and communal use of recreational entheogenic plants like magic mushrooms. This would not create a legal sales market, however, as the transfer of money for products would remain illegal. The one caveat to this, is in the circumstances of “counseling, spiritual guidance, or a related service that is provided in conjunction with the use of an entheogenic plant or fungus under the guidance and supervision of an individual providing the service”, when it would not be illegal to charge a fee.

Even without a regulated market, there don’t seem to be civil penalties attached, which would be the case with a standard decriminalization, thus making for an actual legalization. Though the bill co-authors worded it with the intention of use for religious purposes, there is no specification about showing religious intent, nor can any government tell a person how to be spiritual without breaking the first amendment of the constitution.

What else is going on in Michigan?

Trying to pass a state-wide psychedelics legalization measure is already quite forward thinking. And Michigan’s biggest city Detroit passing a bill to decriminalize psychedelics in the form of entheogenic plants will only help bolster this larger initiative. But elsewhere in Michigan, other things have also happened to promote these looser psychedelics measures.

entheogens

For one thing, Detroit is not the first location in Michigan to independently create a decriminalization measure. In 2020, Ann Arbor, Michigan passed a decriminalization measure, followed by Washtenaw County, Michigan in 2021. Ann Arbor passed its legislation by way of a unanimous city council vote which decriminalized possession, cultivation, and non-commercial use of entheogenic plants like magic mushrooms.

Washtenaw County did it differently, with the decriminalization coming by way of the County Prosecutor’s Office. The office created a directive for it to be the lowest priority of law enforcement to prosecute people for crimes involving such psychedelic plants. Much like Seattle, this is not a legal policy change, which should be considered, but rather a directive to law enforcement that they shouldn’t be going after these crimes. This lack of an actual legal basis, does not legally prevent such prosecutions, though.

Grand Rapids is also making some headway, but not in the form of a decriminalization or legalization measure. Instead, the city is pushing for more research into entheogens, so that more information can be collected for a possible future decriminalization.

Other locations in Michigan are also starting to mobilize efforts for legal changes concerning psychedelics in the form of entheogenic plants. These include Hazel Park and Madison Heights, both suburbs of Detroit; Lancing, the capital of Michigan; college town East Lancing; Traverse City, which is a big tourist destination; the city of Ypsilanti; and Flint, which given its issues simply getting clean water, should really just have drugs thrown at it at this point.

Psychedelics in the rest of the US

There are several state and local locations in the US that have already approved some kind of measure for the decriminalization of psychedelics, whether with formal legislation, or a directive to law enforcement. These include: Denver, Colorado; Oakland, Santa Cruz, and Arcata, California; Ann Arbor, Washtenaw County, and Detroit, Michigan; Washington, DC; Somerville, Cambridge, Northampton, and Easthampton, Massachusetts; and Seattle, Washington.

In terms of statewide policies, Oregon leads the country with a November, 3rd, 2020 medical legalization measure (Measure 109), and a full state decriminalization policy (Measure 110) that were voted in on the same day. Both passed by voter referendum in 2020, making Oregon the first state to set such policies.

magic mushrooms

On February 4th, 2021, New Jersey instituted a lesser decriminalization policy that lowered penalties, but without getting rid of them. Whereas the fine for magic mushrooms used to be as high as $15,000, its now capped at $1,000. And whereas offenders used to face up to five years in prison, they now only face six months.

Rhode Island didn’t exactly set a specific decriminalization law, but on July 7th, 2021, it instituted a two-year pilot program for the use of illicit drugs in authorized consumption sites with medical supervision. Each municipality is in charge of giving authorization to facilities, and though this is not a legalization, it does provide a way to use drugs without legal repercussions, so long as it’s done in the correct area. What will happen after the pilot program ends, is hard to say.

Conclusion

While Detroit is the most recent to pass a measure to decriminalize magic mushrooms and other entheogenic plants, plenty of other locations in the US are also looking to loosen laws on this front. However, bills often come up and die, like with Florida, so waiting for a bill to gain traction before getting all excited, is sometimes best.

What can be said for sure, is that there is certainly a trend going on when it comes to the acceptance of psychedelics, both medically and recreationally. So even if current legislation in the pipelines doesn’t go through, there will surely be more attempts coming. Plus, with so any locations that have already approved measures, this is no longer a possible idea for the future, but something which is actively happening. 2022 should be a very interesting year when it comes to the further legalizations and decriminalization measures of psychedelic compounds.

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DisclaimerHi, I’m a researcher and writer. I’m not a doctor, lawyer, or businessperson. All information in my articles is sourced and referenced, and all opinions stated are mine. I am not giving anyone advise, and though I am more than happy to discuss topics, should someone have a further question or concern, they should seek guidance from a relevant professional.

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Detroit Approves Psychedelics Decriminalization Ballot Measure

Detroit voters overwhelmingly approved Proposal E on Tuesday, to decriminalize naturally occurring psychedelic drugs including mescaline, ayahuasca, psilocybin and dimethyltryptamine (DMT). Proposal E, which was approved by 61 percent of the city’s voters, makes the personal possession and therapeutic use of entheogenic plants and fungi such as psilocybin mushrooms the city’s lowest law enforcement priority.

With the adoption of the ballot measure, Detroit becomes the latest municipality to approve psychedelics decriminalization measures, with Washington, D.C., Denver and Oakland, California and other cities nationwide passing similar legislation through the ballot box or city council action. Other cities in Michigan including Ann Arbor and Grand Rapids have also advanced similar measures.

“We are seeing a steady trend underway of local municipalities voting to decriminalize the therapeutic use of entheogenic plants, Dr. John Huber, CEO of TripSitter Clinic, a ketamine telemedicine clinic that has recently become available in Michigan, told High Times in an email. 

“The passage of this ballot measure in Detroit represents where everyday people are at as it relates to embracing non-traditional modalities of healing,” Huber added. “Every local decriminalization law which passes serves to create a more equitable society: one that doesn’t judge or punish individuals for embarking on their own journey of healing.”

Proposal E qualified for Detroit’s November ballot after a signature-gathering campaign spearheaded by the group Decriminalize Nature Michigan. Moudou Baqui, a spokesperson for Decriminalize Nature in Detroit, said that the measure does not apply to commercial psychedelic activity, which would have necessitated detailed regulatory provisions.

“If we move to decriminalize, we eliminate a whole slew of potential issues, whether it’s licensing, whether it’s so-called code enforcement, whether it’s so-called compliance issues,” Baqui told Detroit public radio.

Broader Psychedelic Decriminalization Efforts Also Underway in Detroit

Activists and lawmakers are pushing to reform policy on psychedelic drugs and entheogenic plants at the state level, as well. In last year’s November election, voters made Oregon the first state in the nation to decriminalize psilocybin for therapeutic use with the passage of Measure 109. 

And in September, Michigan Democratic state Senator Jeff Irwin introduced a bill to decriminalize psychedelic drugs including psilocybin and mescaline in the state, although commercial production and sales would still be illegal. Under the legislation, Senate Bill 631, possession and use of psychedelic drugs produced by entheogenic plants and fungi including psilocybin, DMT, ibogaine, mescaline and psilocybin would be “exempt from criminal prosecution in certain circumstances.”

“These substances have medicinal value, they have religious significance and they have a very low propensity for abuse,” Irwin told the Michigan Advance after he introduced the bill. “And so, that’s why I’m proposing to decriminalize the substance because it really makes no sense to spend any time or money arresting people and turning their lives upside down.”

Irwin’s bill is co-sponsored by fellow Democrat Senator Adam Hollier, who says that psychedelics decriminalization could be the first step toward legalization. 

“Michigan can be what Colorado was for marijuana almost a decade ago as a boon and as an economic opportunity,” Hollier said. “But most importantly, [we need to] stop trying to make things criminal for no reason just because people don’t like them.”

“Because often the people who get in trouble for these things are minority communities, right? Decriminalizing just adds a little more equity in the system,” he added.

Better Mental Health Through Psychedelics

Payton Nyquvest, CEO and founder of psychedelic-assisted therapy and products company Numinus, says that psychedelic medicine and psychotherapy have the power to transform lives. Ongoing studies of psychedelic-assisted therapy show a potential to treat many serious conditions, including depression, anxiety, substance use disorder and PTSD.

“The current healthcare systems are not equipped to handle the increasing global rates of mental illness, addiction and trauma and aren’t able to treat and manage mental health needs. Psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy relies on trained psychedelic therapists and counselors who support patients on their journeys, combining traditional psychotherapy with psychedelic medicine,” Nyquvest told High Times in a virtual interview. 

“Psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy is a trauma-informed practice that integrates the experiences a patient has during their psychedelic journey with their everyday life, helping the patient to move past or better understand their traumas.”

Nyquvest added that the modern health care system needs to develop new treatments as alternatives to traditional therapies, which are not effective for many patients. Decriminalization, he said, can help speed the process. 

“Decriminalizing psychedelics is one step towards reducing the stigma associated with psychedelic medicines and increasing accessibility in mental health treatments,” Nyquvest said. “The current system relies heavily on traditional pharmaceuticals focused on treating the symptoms and not the cause. This system can be cost-prohibitive, with a high barrier to entry.”

Nyquvest believes that with continued research, therapists can “create a new model of accessibility” for their patients, particularly those with conditions that resist current standard mental health treatments.

Polling places for Detroit’s election open at 7 a.m. and close at 8 p.m. on Tuesday, November 2, 2021.

The post Detroit Approves Psychedelics Decriminalization Ballot Measure appeared first on High Times.

NBA Icon Chris Webber Unveils Detroit Cannabis Facility

NBA Hall of Famer and entrepreneur Chris Webber on Tuesday broke ground on Players Only Holdings, a $50 million cannabis production and training facility in Detroit’s Corktown neighborhood. Once completed, the new facility sitting on nine acres near the Detroit River is expected to create hundreds of jobs over the next three years.

Co-founded by Webber with fellow entrepreneur Lavetta Willis, Players Only is a Black-owned business focused on cannabis cultivation, real estate development, brand partnerships and creative content development and management. The 180,000 square foot Players Only facility, dubbed the Webber Wellness Compound, will include a 60,000-square-foot cannabis cultivation operation, an 8,000-square-foot cannabis dispensary and a private consumption lounge. 

At Tuesday’s groundbreaking ceremony, Webber announced the creation of a distribution partnership for Players Only branded products with Gage Growth Corp., a leading, Michigan-licensed cannabis operator headed by CEO Fabian Monaco.

“This will be the shining jewel of Michigan. Everything great in Michigan starts in Detroit, and I am excited to collaborate with Gage to bring our premium line of Players Only products to this community,” former Detroit Piston star Webber said in a statement from Players Only. “Gage is the HOF of cannabis operations. With Fabian Monaco as a teammate, this relationship is a winner on every level.”

Courtesy of Players Only Holdings

Cookies U Comes To Michigan

Webber also took the opportunity to reveal the Detroit expansion of cannabis training program Cookies U, founded by rapper and cannabis mogul Berner in partnership with The WebberWildWillis Foundation, a nonprofit organization focused on uplifting and enriching Black and Brown communities negatively impacted by the War on Drugs. In a statement, Berner characterized the state of Michigan as “one of the most important markets in the cannabis industry.”

NBA
Courtesy of Players Only Holdings

“Detroit is the first city we opened a flagship store in, outside of California. I have to salute Chris Webber, Jason Wild and Lavetta Willis for supporting our vision to build out Cookies U in Humboldt California and extending the program to Detroit, which happens to be Chris’s hometown,” said Berner, co-founder and CEO of Cookies. “Michigan has always been an advanced and educated market, and we couldn’t be more excited to offer underrepresented people an opportunity to learn the industry from seed to sale.”

Cookies U is a hands-on, fee-free training program that will recruit students from underserved communities and prepare them for jobs in the cannabis industry, including access to a GED program with a financial literacy component. In addition to the educational curriculum, a job-placement program will help graduates find employment in Michigan’s booming legal cannabis market.

“This Detroit training and operations facility is only the first step in bringing tangible opportunities to the people of this city—one that means so much to me—while eliminating barriers to an industry with unlimited economic potential,” Webber said. 

“We will create, foster and provide a cannabis ecosystem that celebrates diversity, creates jobs and benefits this community—focusing intensely on those who are being left behind. As social equity programs struggle in many states, we are here to support legacy operators who created the foundation for this industry so that they are included in future iterations of it while we wait on the politics to catch up.”

Construction on the first phase of the Webber Wellness Compound is expected to begin this fall, with work slated to wrap up by March 2022. A $125 million second phase, which as of yet has no announced timeline, will expand the cultivation area by 80,000 square feet.

“This is my biggest priority in life,” Webber said. “I’ve seen who (Willis) and I have helped across the country and the lives that have been disrupted by cannabis. Hopefully, we can do a little bit of repairing. Hopefully, we can help the city.”

The post NBA Icon Chris Webber Unveils Detroit Cannabis Facility appeared first on High Times.

Thursday March 11, 2021 Headlines | Marijuana Today Daily News

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Friday, December 11, 2020 Headlines | Marijuana Today Daily News

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Support The Michigan Cannabis Prisoner Release Campaign

With 40,000 people incarcerated in US prisons for cannabis possession as of 2020, many states and local governments are beginning to rethink policy surrounding the criminal implications and punishment it still holds. Michigan Cannabis Prisoners state after legalization Michigan is one of 13 states that has legalized recreational cannabis consumption and possession, yet still penalizes […]

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Friday, October 9, 2020 Headlines | Marijuana Today Daily News

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