Canadians who work with the cannabis industry are getting banned from the U.S. for life. The Georgia teen who was taken away from his home for smoking marijuana to treat his epilepsy said he was abused in state custody. Maine’s governor vetoed a medical marijuana expansion bill. Also: There will be no newsletter tomorrow, as our editor is speaking at CannabisFest in Montreal. 🌳
America is banning Canadians who work with the cannabis industry. Even if they have never used marijuana, Canadians who are involved in the cannabis industry are getting lifetime bans from entering the U.S. The bans are affecting people who do not touch the plant: The CEO of an agricultural equipment manufacturer and two of his employees were banned from the U.S. because a machine that they had plans to make would be sold to cannabis producers. “We had not yet designed the product, we had not yet marketed the product and we’d not yet sold the product,” said Jay Evans. His company “is not involved with the production, distribution or sale of cannabis. But because its equipment is explicitly intended to be used by people who are, Evans and his colleagues were told after a six-hour interview they were ‘drug traffickers’ according to U.S. federal law.” People like Evans can still enter the U.S. if they seek a legal waiver from an immigration lawyer. The Star
Georgia parents who had teen taken away consider moving to a different state. A Georgia teen was taken away from his family after officials learned his parents allowed him to smoke marijuana to treat his epilepsy. His parents, who were jailed for almost a week, are now considering moving the family to a more cannabis-friendly state. But his parents vowed to keep advocating for marijuana reform in their home state. Fifteen-year-old David Brill said he was “upset” about being taken away from home. He also detailed abuse he experience while in state custody: “staff members allowed people to ‘jump me’ during his stay. One staff member threatened physical violence against David while he was experiencing a seizure, [his mother] Suzanne said.” Marijuana Moment
Maine governor vetoed medical marijuana bill. No surprise here: The anti-marijuana governor of Maine vetoed a bill that would expand medical marijuana access in the state. The legislation would effectively get rid of the list of qualifying conditions in a bid to use marijuana to help remedy the opioid crisis. It would also establish a marijuana research fund and license cannabis extraction labs. “The bill now goes to the Legislature for override consideration. It is difficult to predict whether supporters will have the votes needed to override [governor Paul] LePage.” Press Herald
Judge dismissed Cannabis Church case. The First Church of Cannabis sued Indianapolis and the state of Indiana for the right to use cannabis as a religious sacrament. “The undisputed evidence demonstrates that permitting a religious exemption to laws that prohibit the use and possession of marijuana would hinder drug enforcement efforts statewide and negatively impact public health and safety,” wrote the judge who dismissed the case. The church’s founder and leader vowed to continue fighting. The state attorney general, who is facing sexual harassment allegations, praised the decision. The Indianapolis Star
Has marijuana caused ER visits to skyrocket? PolitiFact takes on the oft-cited claim of marijuana opponents that cannabis has caused emergency room visits to skyrocket in states that have legalized the drug. “We cannot conclusively say that marijuana has caused an increase in visits to the emergency room. Rather, the data show that more people are arriving at the hospital having recently or habitually used cannabis, even if that is not their primary condition (or related at all to their primary condition).” A Harvard professor of medicine explained that the “main risk from marijuana is from the risky or stupid things people do after using it, such as driving, rather than from any toxic effects of the substance itself, which is remarkably safe.” PolitiFact
🚨 Shameless Friend Promotion 🚨
The Maze. Our friends at Mannada have launched The Maze, a weekly newsletter highlighting all the cannabis events you need to know. The listings include something for everyone, whether you’re a professional looking for networking events, an advocate looking to get politically involved, or just a casual consumer looking to meet like-minded people. From New York City to Toronto to Amsterdam, The Maze hopes to help the cannabis community stay on top of the burgeoning cannabis event scene. Submit your event or sign up for the newsletter here: Mannada
Son of former crime lab director pleads guilty to marijuana charges. The son of a former Miami Valley, Ohio crime lab director pleaded guilty to cultivating 5,000 – 20,000 grams of cannabis, money laundering, and engaging in corrupt activity. A special prosecutor was appointed in the case to avoid the appearance of conflicts of interest. Dayton Daily News
Vets warn about marijuana poisoning dogs. Veterinarians and animal poison control centers in California are reporting a spike in dogs being poisoned by marijuana. One doctor, whose dog suffered from THC poisoning, warned cannabis consumers to properly dispose of their cannabis products. “Apparently, discarded joints and edibles are a huge problem and dogs easily scarf them up, even when on a leash,” she wrote. “I am all for legal marijuana, it’s not my thing but if it is your thing that is fine. Just please discard any remnants, no matter how small, in trash cans.” Calls to an animal poison hotline for pets eating marijuana products have increased 448 percent in the past six years. NBC News
What Flow Kana will do with that $22 million. The craft cannabis brand that hopes to become the “Whole Foods of cannabis” plans to expand its Mendocino facility that currently processes cannabis grown by about 100 small farmers. “This allows us to take on more farmers,” said a spokesperson for the company. The company regularly works with a core group of 25 to 35 small cultivators. Small farmers in California have struggled to enter the legal, regulated market with the high costs of compliance and competition with large, commercial operators. The Press Democrat
Cannabis in Canada. Canadian cannabis companies are aiming to dominate the global marijuana market. The Economist “A financial boom not seen since the dot-com mania of the late 1990s has overtaken Canada.” The New York Times B.C. Municipalities is asking the provincial government for a cannabis production moratorium on agricultural land. Vancouver’s city councilor described the request as “reefer madness.” Vancouver Sun
Elsewhere around the world… Mexico‘s next interior secretary will push for recreational marijuana legalization. KXAS The U.K.‘s Labour Party is asking its members to help draft a “drug policy of the future.” The Guardian The Caribbean Community (CARICOM), an organization of Caribbean nations, will consider reclassifying marijuana. Nineteen heads of state in the region agreed that marijuana policy needed to be reviewed. Marijuana Moment “The quality [of cannabis] we have is one of the best in the world,” said Lebanon‘s economy and trade minister. McKinsey recommended that the country rebuild its economy by becoming a leading provider of medical marijuana. Bloomberg
Word on the States
- In Massachusetts, a cannabis-testing lab completed an application for a recreational license. Somerville considers local equity rules.
- In California, businesses push for a banking solution. How businesses are destroying non-compliant marijuana.
- In Vermont, a look at efforts to introduce a commercial cannabis market.
- In Maryland, regulators license another seven medical marijuana dispensaries. Regulators are investigating a medical cannabis grower for illegal pesticide use.
- In New York, gubernatorial candidate Cynthia Nixon is raising money through a bong giveaway.
- In Oklahoma, the group behind a bid to get recreational legalization on the ballot says it’s halfway to getting all the signatures needed. Health officials released proposed medical marijuana rules.
- In New Jersey, cannabis cash was left out of the state budget but the governor says it is coming.
- In Florida, one marijuana advocate is working to legalize recreational marijuana in 2020.
- In New Mexico, a look at where gubernatorial candidates stand on marijuana reform.
- In Idaho, a look at the state’s pro-marijuana candidate for governor.
- In Texas, pro-pot Senate candidate Beto O’Rourke performed ‘Roll Me Up and Smoke Me When I Die’ with Willie Nelson.
Word for Word
“Instead of writing tickets for minor equipment problems, police officers are authorized to issue $50 coupons so motorists can have those problems fixed at area auto shops. Twenty participating police departments have given out approximately 660 coupons in a little more than a year. The program is among several changes after [Philando] Castile’s death that are aimed at improving the lives of low-income residents here and transforming how police interact with them. ” – Dan Simmons for The Washington Post
“In Concord, which voted for a [marijuana] ban June 12, opponents cited fears of allowing pot shops near schools. Residents of Concord felt it was okay for somebody else’s kids to be around marijuana retailers, though — the town’s voters approved legalization in 2016. One is forced to wonder: Which children did the overwhelmingly white and wealthy towns have in mind, and would they have voted differently in 2016 if all state residents were exposed to its consequences equally? Massachusetts is headed toward a two-tier system, strongly correlated to race and privilege, and the law allows it. It’s not a pretty picture — and if towns try to make it even worse through moratoriums, officials should just say no.” – The Editorial Board for The Boston Globe