Blog Voices from the Frontlines

Dec 052015

Check out the ASA Activist Newsletter

The ASA Activist Newsletter for December is out with all the news advocates need. In this issue you'll find stories about:

  • a new international initiative from a global coalition of patients
  • efforts to fire the DEA chief for calling medical cannabis a joke
  • Senate action to let VA doctors recommend medical cannabis
  • Updates on Minnesota, New York, Maryland, Florida, and Pennsylvania
  • Action you can take today to get Congress to protect patients

Check it out today, then download a copy to print and distribute.

Dec 032015

Attention Iowa: Email Senator Grassley Urging him to Call for a Hearing on the CARERS Act - Americans for Safe Access

IowaActionAlertGraphic.jpg

The CARERS Act is the most comprehensive piece of federal medical marijuana legislation ever introduced in Congress. Introduced in the Senate by Senators Cory Booker (D-NJ), Rand Paul (R-KY), and Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), the bipartisan legislation would remedy the state-federal conflict over medical marijuana laws. Unfortunately, Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA), who chairs the Senate Judiciary Committee, is blocking the bill from moving forward by not giving the bill the hearing that it deserves.

An Iowa mother and activist, Erin Miller, recently wrote an op-ed calling for Sen. Grassley to hold a hearing or vote in the Judiciary committee on the CARERS Act. Her son, Abram, suffers from numerous disorders and disabilities, but after introducing CBD as a part of Abram’s medicine regime her family has seen huge improvements in his condition. Miller says her son is finally able to have fun like a typical little boy, and hasn’t suffered from a physical seizure since June.

Dec 012015

Happy Giving Tuesday ➝ Give the Gift of Safe Access! - Americans for Safe Access

givingtuesday.pngToday is #GivingTuesday, a day dedicated to giving back!

Make a generous contribution today and join us in celebrating this new tradition of global generosity. Your contribution of $5, $35, $50, or more, will go a long way towards ensuring ASA has the resources we need to advocate with lawmakers, fight in court, support medical cannabis defendants, frame the national conversation about medical cannabis, and so much more!

In addition, your generosity will help us continue to sponsor hundreds of patients from across the country to attend the 2016 National Medical Cannabis Unity Conference and Lobby Day.

Nov 302015

California Weekly Roundup: November 30, 2015 - Americans for Safe Access

ASA California Weekly Roundup: November 30, 2015 

The California Weekly Roundup, a project of the California Campaign for Safe Access (CCSA), is your way to stay connected to on the latest events and news on medical cannabis in California. CCSA is Americans for Safe Access’ oldest state campaign. There are more legal patients, providers, and recommending physicians in California than any other state. More than 1.4 million patients have safe, reliable, and dignified access to medicine in the state, but significant challenges remain. Click on the links on below or scroll through the entire post to learn more about what is happening in California and how you can participate.

Nov 232015

New Yorkers, it's time to talk to your doctor about medical cannabis education - Americans for Safe Access

Talk_with_your_Physician_About_Medical_Canabis.jpgTalking to your doctor is one of the most important parts of good health care. We know your health care is very important to you. Which is why we want to encourage you to talk to your physician about medical cannabis therapeutics and education.

Whether you are already a patient or looking to find more information about medical cannabis as a treatment option, it is imperative your physicians have all the information they need before making decisions regarding your care. While your physician has spent countless hours obtaining education, medical schools and residency programs do not offer education in the area of medical marijuana, and there are few unbiased quality educational resources on this topic.

You depend on your physician to direct you towards treatments and therapies that will be of benefit, and away from those that may cause you harm. Ask your physician to obtain comprehensive education by enrolling in the New York State Practitioner Education Medical Use of Marijuana Course offered by TheAnswerPage

Nov 232015

California Weekly Roundup: November 23, 2015 - Americans for Safe Access

ASA California Weekly Roundup: November 23, 2015 

The California Roundup a project of the California Campaign for Safe Access, is your way to stay connected to on the latest events and news on medical cannabis in California. The California Campaign for Safe Access is ASA's oldest state campaign. There are more legal patients, providers, and recommending physicians in California than any other state. More than 1.4 million patients have safe, reliable, and dignified access to medicine in the state, but significant challenges remain. 

Click on the links on below or scroll through the entire email to learn more about what is happening in California and how you can participate.

Nov 172015

California Weekly Roundup: November 16, 2015 - Americans for Safe Access

ASA California Weekly Roundup: November 16, 2015 

The California Roundup a project of the California Campaign for Safe Access, is your way to stay connected to on the latest events and news on medical cannabis in California. The California Campaign for Safe Access is ASA's oldest state campaign. There are more legal patients, providers, and recommending physicians in California than any other state. More than 1.4 million patients have safe, reliable, and dignified access to medicine in the state, but significant challenges remain. 

Click on the links on below or scroll through the entire email to learn more about what is happening in California and how you can participate.

News 

  • National 
  • California
  • Local

Events 

  • November 20-21, 2015 - New West Summit (San Francisco)… 50% Off for ASA Members!
  • March 18-22, 2016 –National Medical Cannabis Unity Conference (Washington, DC)

Court Support 

  • November 19, 2015 - Free Baby Peter (Riverside)
  • November 19, 2015 - Court Support for Pure Life (Placerville)
  • More

Take Action Now 

  • Call your Members of Congress to Support the CARERS Act! (National)
  • Join ASA Today! (National)

ASA Website Spotlight 

  • Blog: DEA Chief Shows Yet Again He Has No Clue About Marijuana
  • Know the Rules of Engagement: Civics 101

Chapter & Affiliate Meetings 

  • November 17, 2015 - San Francisco ASA (San Francisco)
  • November 18, 2015 - Lake County ASA (Clearlake Oaks)
  • November 18, 2015 - East Bay ASA (Berkeley)
  • November 22, 2015 - Nevada County ASA (North San Juan)

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Nov 112015

Senate Approves Veterans Medical Cannabis Access, but no Policy Change Yet - Americans for Safe Access

On Tuesday, the Senate approved the Military Construction and Veterans Affairs and Related Agencies (MilCon-VA) Appropriations Act for fiscal year 2016 which contained the Veterans Equal Access Amendment. If signed into law, the amendment would forbid the Veterans Administration from punishing V.A. doctors who write medical cannabis recommendations in states where it is legal to do so. However, the current "gag order" policy forbidding V.A. physicians from writing medical cannabis recommendations or even discussing the benefits of medical cannabis therapy, known as VHA Directive 2011-004, remains in place for the time being.

Changing the policy could take place through some combination of Congressional action and/or revising the policy internally at the V.A. It's important to note from the outset that Directive 2011-004 is set to expire at the end of 2015. At that point, the V.A. could reissue the directive, issue a new directive with a different policy on medical cannabis, or (however unlikely) simply let it expire without a replacement policy. The most likely outcome seems to be a revised policy. In spite of the "gag order" nature of Directive 2011-004, it was actually an improvement upon the previous policy which allowed the Administration to deny health care to veterans enrolled in state medical cannabis programs. Despite this improvement from the pre-2011 policy, the current directive still puts veterans at a disadvantage by having to go out of network and out of pocket to see a doctor if they require medical cannabis therapy. Of course, any change in policy would have to conform to whatever budget riders are attached the MilCon-VA Appropriations bill, but the likelihood of the amendment language becoming law is slim.

Nov 092015

DEA Chief Shows Yet Again He Has No Clue About Marijuana - Americans for Safe Access

Sign_Petition_to_Fire_Chuck_Rosenberg.jpgDEA Chief Administrator Chuck Rosenberg has once again managed to stick his foot in his mouth about cannabis. Earlier this week, Rosenberg stated that the notion of patients finding therapeutic relief from cannabis bothered him, going on to say "don't call it medicine -- that is a joke." 

The statement comes just a couple of months after the newly appointed DEA chief admitted that he was "not an expert" on marijuana, and had difficulty stating with certainty whether marijuana was more or less dangerous than heroin. After a week of what must have been intense internal deliberation, Rosenberg later clarified his position, but the embarrassment of nation's top drug enforcement agent's inability to assert the relative harms of substances was already done. 

Nov 092015

California Weekly Roundup: November 9, 2015 - Americans for Safe Access

CA Weekly RoundupContents (Scroll down for details and links):

News

  • National
  • California
  • Local

Events

  • November 13, 2015 - Tri-County Cannabis Policy Summit (Petaluma)
  • November 20-21, 2015 - New West Summit (San Francisco)
  • March 18-22, 2016 –National Medical Cannabis Unity Conference (Washington, DC)

Court Support

  • November 10, 2015 - Court Support for Pure Life (Placerville)
  • More

Take Action Now

  • Pardon the Kettle Falls Five (National)
  • Call your Members of Congress to Support the CARERS Act! (National)

ASA Website Spotlight

  • ASA Condition-based Booklets
  • The Informed Advocate

Chapter & Affiliate Meetings

  • November 12, 2015 - Brownie Mary Club of San Francisco (San Francisco)