DPA Releases Nine-Part Video Series: Rethinking the “Drug Dealer”

Today, the Drug Policy Alliance is releasing a nine-part video series challenging assumptions about who ends up behind bars for drug selling and distribution-related offenses.

The series includes three introductory videos breaking down the history and ineffectiveness of the current system of domestic drug market criminalization, which often results in the same punishment for low-level individuals and ‘kingpins.’ It also includes six videos of individuals sharing their stories about being ensnared in the criminal justice system for sales-related offenses.

“We grow up being told that drug dealers are the worst of the worst,” said Alyssa Stryker, Criminal Justice Reform Manager at the Drug Policy Alliance. “We’re told we need to put them in prison for decades because they’re violent kingpins getting rich by preying on people who use drugs. But many people who sell drugs are people who use drugs, or are working at the very bottom of drug selling hierarchies and barely making ends meet. Many are not involved in any kind of violence or coercion, and are simply trying to support their families under challenging economic conditions.”

The DPA series includes the story of Aron Tuff, a veteran from Georgia who used illegal drugs to manage the pain of a back injury sustained during his Army service. The police found 0.3 grams of cocaine on the ground near Mr. Tuff at a party, and charged him with possession with intent to distribute. Because of prior convictions related to his drug use, Mr. Tuff received a life sentence without the possibility of parole.

It also includes the story of Caswick Naverro, who began using drugs at a young age to deal with the post-traumatic stress symptoms he experienced as a result of the violence in his New Orleans neighborhood. He started selling drugs when he was 13 years old to help support his younger siblings and single mother, who suffers from lupus.

“We need to stop sending people like this to prison for decades,” added Stryker. “And ultimately we need to stop relying on criminal punishment to address this issue and instead focus on fixing the prohibitionist policies and underlying structural economic issues that drive people into drug selling in the first place.”


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Diego Pellicer Worldwide, Inc. Announces Record-Breaking Gross Sales In July For Denver Licensee

Diego Pellicer Worldwide, Inc. Announces Record-Breaking Gross Sales In July For Denver Licensee

Increasing average ticket sales demonstrate that Diego Pellicer – Colorado is commanding the market

News provided by

Diego Pellicer Worldwide, Inc.

Aug 08, 2019, 10:37 ET

DENVER, Aug. 8, 2019 /PRNewswire/ — Summer is heating up for Diego PellicerColorado and July has proven to be the hottest few weeks for the West Alameda location. Diego Pellicer Worldwide, Inc. (OTCQB: DPWW), the premium marijuana brand and retail development company, today announced that its Denver licensee has reported record-breaking July sales along with an increase of 8.56 percent in average ticket sales since April, indicating a solid command of the market.

Diego PellicerColorado has clearly proven that premium products plus outstanding customer service and a world-class shopping experience is a winning formula for success,” said Ron Throgmartin, chief executive officer, Diego Pellicer Worldwide, Inc. “Take for example craft cannabis, which is big news in the marketplace right now, but something Diego PellicerColorado has worked hard to curate and make available at all price points. This has helped deliver the premium Diego Pellicer promise to expand its customer base.”

Craft Cannabis for the Connoisseur: Throgmartin Featured in Marijuana Business Magazine
Diego Pellicer Worldwide, Inc. CEO Ron Throgmartin was featured in the August 2019 edition of Marijuana Business Magazine. In the three-page article, Throgmartin shares his expertise on the definition of craft cannabis, retail environments, vertical integration strategies and more. Throgmartin states, “We want to be vertically integrated to the extent we have some protection on pricing, availability and quality, but not to the extent it impedes our promise to the consumer that we’re going to put the best available product on the shelf.”

Read the full article “Craft Doesn’t Have to Mean Overpriced,” on page 68 https://mjbizmagazine.com/digital-issues/2019-07-Aug/.

About Diego Pellicer Worldwide, Inc. (OTCQB: DPWW)
Diego Pellicer Worldwide, Inc. is the premium marijuana brand and management company. In addition to its branded locations in Colorado, the company actively seeks to develop and manage high-end, turnkey cannabis retail stores. When federally legal, DPWW is positioned to become a national, vertically integrated cannabis company. To learn more about how to become a branded Diego Pellicer retailer, cultivator or investor visit www.Diego-Pellicer.com.

Safe Harbor Statement
Certain statements contained in this press release may be construed as “forward-looking statements” as defined in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 (the “Act”). The words “estimate,” “project,” “intends,” “expects,” “anticipates,” “believes” and similar expressions are intended to identify forward-looking statements. Such forward-looking statements are made based on management’s beliefs, as well as assumptions made by, and information currently available to, management pursuant to the “safe-harbor” provisions of the Act. These statements are subject to certain risks and uncertainties that may cause actual results to differ materially from those projected on the basis of these statements. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date made. The Company also undertakes no obligation to disclose any revision to these forward-looking statements to reflect events or circumstances after the date made or to reflect the occurrence of unanticipated events.


Suzanne Herrick, Fedoruk & Associates, Inc., 612-247-3079, suzanne@fedorukinc.com

Nello Gonfiantini, Diego Pellicer Worldwide, Inc., 775-690-2188, nello@diego-pellicer.com

Neil Demers, Diego Pellicer Colorado, 720-937-9073, neil@diego-pellicer.com

Press Release

New Jersey Lawmakers Advance Important Marijuana Law Reform Bills

TRENTON, NJ — In some big news out of New Jersey, several marijuana reform bills have been voted out of their committees and are awaiting floor votes.

Senate Bill 2703 and Assembly Bill 4497 have both passed out of their committees and are set to be voted on as early as Monday, March 25th.

These bills would legalize the personal possession of one ounce or less of cannabis and would regulate and tax the adult-use and retail sale. Some highlights of this landmark legislation are-

  • Expedited expungement of past misdemeanor marijuana convictions
  • Taxing marijuana sales at three-percent, which will be collected by or paid to municipalities wherever retail stores exist
  • Incentives to promote socio-economic, racial, and gender equity in the state’s cannabis industry

Governor Phil Murphy, one of the driving forces of marijuana legalization in the state since taking office in 2018, has already signaled his intent to sign a legalization bill once it gets to his desk.

However, the margins in the New Jersey State Legislature are still very close, with a slight majority of the legislators being in favor of legalizing marijuana for adult-use in the state.

With several state lawmakers still on the fence about legalization, input from residents of New Jersey is of paramount importance. Legalizing marijuana would result in dozens of positive impacts for New Jerseyans and cannot happen without the support of reform-minded residents who are committed to personal freedom in New Jersey.

Are you a New Jersey resident? Click here to send a message to your legislators in support of legalizing marijuana in the Garden State.

Other legislation, Senate Bill 3205 and Assembly Bill 4498 have both passed out of their committees and are awaiting scheduled votes. These bills would allow for the expedited expungement of certain marijuana-related convictions after marijuana legalization is signed into law in New Jersey. It reduces the wait time for expungement and expands the list of convictions eligible for expungement upon marijuana legalization in the state.

Separate legislation, Senate Bill 10 and Assembly Bill 10 have both passed out of their committees and are awaiting scheduled votes. These bills would expand the state’s medical marijuana program to allow for greater accessibility and protections for qualified patients. It increases the amount of medical cannabis a qualified patient is legally allowed to purchase and possess, protects patients from losing their jobs or custody of their children simply because of their status as a medical patient, and phases out retail sales taxes on medical marijuana to make the program more affordable for patients.

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NORML Responds to Latest Cannabis and Psychosis Claims

widely reported study appearing today in the British journal The Lancet alleges that an estimated 30 to 50 percent of psychosis cases in Europe are due to cannabis exposure, and that exposure to elevated levels of THC increases this risk.

NORML has previously written on the data showing a multi-directional association between cannabis and psychiatric illnesses, and we have cautioned that those predisposed to psychosis or other disorders may be at higher risk for adverse events.

That said, it remains premature at best, and sensational at worst to claim that a causal relationship exists between marijuana use and psychiatric disorders on the basis of this new paper. That is because, by the observational nature of its design, this study at best can only demonstrate a correlation.

Nonetheless, despite this limitation, the authors boldly “assume causality.” Given the fact that such a cause-and-effect relationship remains unproven and there as of yet exists no consensus among experts that such causation exists, their assumption is, at best, highly questionable.

Moreover, it is well established that those with psychiatric illness typically use all intoxicants at greater rates than do the general public, so the fact that those admitted to institutions for first-episode psychosis are more likely to consume cannabis than are those in the general population is hardly surprising. But it is not evidence that marijuana in any way causes the condition. Rather, this association may exist because many psychiatric patients are self-medicating with cannabis. Or, this relationship may persist because many people predisposed to psychosis are similarly predisposed to also using cannabis — a theory that is supported by many experts in the field.

Perhaps most importantly, the fact that cannabis has been used by various populations for decades at disparate rates, yet rates of psychosis and other psychiatric disorders have generally remained static over this same period of time, strongly argues against a direct causal relationship.

Finally, authors’ presumptions specific to the supposed disparate effects of cannabis based upon THC potency are also highly questionable. This is because subjects in the study self-reported their cannabis use. As a result, authors had no ability to verify the THC content of the marijuana consumed by participants. Further, the cannabis consumed by subjects in the study was largely obtained via black market channels — leaving the users equally in the dark with regard to its actual cannabinoid content.

Nonetheless, despite these limitations, the concerns raised in this paper and others ought to be taken seriously, and they provide an argument in favor of greater regulation of the plant so that it can be better kept out of the hands of young people and those who may be at higher risk for an adverse reaction. But maintaining cannabis prohibition, unfortunately, achieves neither result. Placed in this context, these latest scare-mongering claims — even if taken at face value — do little to advance arguments in favor of tightening prohibition, and provides ample ammunition to wage for its repeal.

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Thursday, August 8, 2019 Headlines | Marijuana Today Daily News

Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders smiles while appearing on the Joe Rogan podcast.

Marijuana Today Daily Headlines
Thursday, August 8, 2019 | Curated by host Shea Gunther

// Bernie Sanders Wouldn’t Legalize Drugs Other Than Marijuana, He Tells Joe Rogan (Marijuana Moment)

// Marijuana-infused product brand Dixie inks licensing deal with Arizona Iced Tea maker (Marijuana Business Daily)

// One-In-Seven Americans Use CBD, According To A New Gallup Survey (Marijuana Moment)

These headlines are brought to you by Curaleaf, one of the leading vertically-integrated cannabis operators in the U.S. With legal medical marijuana dispensaries, cultivation sites, and processing facilities all over the United States, Curaleaf has served more than 100,000 medical cannabis patients and looks forward to helping many more long into the future. Swing over to Curaleaf.com to learn more about this very cool company!

// California OKs cannabis sales and use at San Francisco’s Outside Lands music festival (LA Times)

// ‘Growing outside is a dream’: Asparagus makes way for cannabis in Canada’s fields (Financial Post)

// Young Living vs. doTERRA: Utah MLM Companies and the CBD Race (Canna Law Blog)

// TGOD Files To List On NASDAQ (Green Market Report)

// Attorney suing OMMA, DPS says potential of police accessing medical marijuana patient data ‘brands’ cardholders with a ‘scarlet letter’ (Tulsa World)

// Hair Follicle Tests Produce More False Positives for Black People, NAACP Says (Merry Jane)

// More Than 150 Proposed SXSW Marijuana Panels Are Being Voted On For Next Year’s Festival (Marijuana Moment)

Check out our other projects:
Marijuana Today— Our flagship title, a weekly podcast examining the world of marijuana business and activism with some of the smartest people in the industry and movement.
Marijuana Media Connect— A service that connects industry insiders in the legal marijuana industry with journalists, bloggers, and writers in need of expert sources for their stories.

Love these headlines? Love our podcast? Support our work with a financial contribution and become a patron.

Photo: Joe Rogan podcast

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New Mexico Lawmakers Approve Marijuana Decriminalization Measure

SANTA FE, NM — New Mexico House and Senate lawmakers have approved legislation, Senate Bill 323, decriminalizing minor marijuana possession offenses.

The proposal now awaits action from Democratic Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham.

The bill reduces first-time penalties for the possession of up to one-half ounce of cannabis from a criminal misdemeanor — punishable by up to 15 days in jail — to a ‘penalty assessment,’ punishable by a $50 fine. Subsequent offenses, or in situations where the defendant possesses greater amounts of marijuana, will remain punishable by the possibility of jail time.

Police in New Mexico made over 3,600 marijuana possession arrests in 2016.

If signed into law, the reduced penalties take effect on July 1, 2019.

Twenty-one states have either legalized or decriminalized the adult possession and use of cannabis.

Broader legislation that sought to legalize the possession of marijuana by adults and regulate its commercial production and sale passed the House, but stalled in the Senate Finance Committee because the Chair failed to call the bill for a vote.

Nonetheless, the Governor has announced that she will add the issue to the agenda of the 2020 legislative session.

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New Mexico Lawmakers Expand Protections for Medical Marijuana Patients

SANTA FE, NM — Lawmakers in New Mexico have approved a pair of bills amending the state’s medical cannabis program to expand patients’ access to the plant and to provide additional legal protections.

Senate Bill 406 expands the pool of patients eligible for cannabis therapy to include those diagnosed with post-traumatic stress, severe chronic pain, Crohn’s disease, Lou Gehrig’s disease, sleep apnea, and neuropathy, among other newly specified conditions. It also enacts explicit legal protections prohibiting employers, social service workers, and hospitals from arbitrarily discriminating against patients solely for their medical cannabis status and/or for their failure to pass a drug test. The measure prohibits regulators from placing limits on the percentage of THC or other cannabinoids in therapeutic products and it establishes reciprocity with other states’ medical cannabis programs.

Separate legislation, Senate Bill 204 establishes regulations and procedures for the storage and administration of certain medical cannabis products to students in school settings.

The bills mark the first significant amendments to the state’s medical cannabis law, which had been opposed by previous Republican Gov. Susana Martinez.

The measures await action from Democratic Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham.

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Questions for Investors and Consumers”

Today, the Drug Policy Alliance released a memo to help cannabis businesses operate in a more socially responsible manner and to guide consumers and investors in making decisions related to the cannabis industry.

“Our work gave birth to the legal marijuana industry, but we’re increasingly at odds with well-resourced marijuana companies, for whom profits often come before measures to repair the harms of prohibition,”  said Maria McFarland Sánchez-Moreno, executive director of the Drug Policy Alliance. “Policymakers need to stand up to the pressure, but it’s also time for investors, consumers, and the industry itself to hold these actors accountable.”

The Drug Policy Alliance has played a pivotal role in marijuana legalization, first for medical purposes and then for all adults. California’s Proposition 64, which DPA played a key leadership role in drafting and passing in 2016, set a new bar for marijuana legalization, with provisions for record expungement, equity in licensing, and reinvestment in communities that have been most harmed. DPA is currently leading campaigns to legalize marijuana in New York, New Jersey, New Mexico, at the federal level, and beyond, with an emphasis on creating well-regulated and inclusive marijuana policies that are rooted in racial and economic justice.

“The harms of marijuana prohibition have been devastating, particularly for Black and Brown people who have suffered dramatic rates of arrest, mass criminalization, heavy-handed policing, seizure of property with little or no process, and large-scale deportations,” added McFarland. “Given this history, those investing and operating in the cannabis sector have some responsibility to support repairing the harms of prohibition.”

The memo can be viewed here.


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Florida’s Medical Marijuana Smoking Ban Has Been Repealed

TALLAHASSEE, FL — Florida’s Republican Governor Ron DeSantis on Monday signed legislation, Senate Bill 182, repealing the state’s blanket ban on the inhalation of herbal forms of medical cannabis.

Upon taking office, Gov. DeSantis demanded lawmakers rescind the ban, which he said was contrary to the provisions of the 2016 voter-initiated medical cannabis access law.

The new law took immediate effect.

Under the law, qualified patients are permitted to possess up to four ounces of herbal cannabis if a recommending physician opines “that the benefits of smoking marijuana for medical use outweigh the risks for the qualified patient.

Lawmakers had previously banned the act of smoking medical cannabis or possessing herbal cannabis flowers, except in instances where they are contained “in a sealed, tamper-proof receptacle for vaping” in 2017.

NORML has long argued against limitations on the inhalation of herbal cannabis, opining that inhalation provides patients with the ability to self-titrate their dose and is associated with the rapid and consistent onset of drug effect.

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