Pages tagged "Steph Sherer"


After the DEA decision and federal court ruling, it's time for Congress to pass the CARERS Act

ASA Exec. Dir. Steph ShererASA Executive Director Steph Sherer published a blog in the Huffington Post on Friday responding the the Drug Enforcements Administration's decision not to reschedule cannabis and to a landmark federal court ruling that upholds ASA's position that the Rohrabacher-Farr Amendment prohibits the federal prosecution of conduct that is allowed by state medical cannabis laws. Steph points out that the ball is now back in Congress' court. It is time to pass comprehensive federal reform, and there is already a solution on the table - the CARERS Act.

Read and share Steph's blog on the Huffington Post website. 


ICCI will foster evidence-based exploration with a modern scientific approach to medical cannabis

3._ICCI_-_group_photo.jpgToday members of Americans for Safe Access (ASA), KOPAC and Dioscorides Global Holdings (DGH) were joined by the Minister of Health for the Czech Republic, Svatopluk Němeček to announce the establishment of a new research center, the International Cannabis and Cannabinoid Institute (ICCI) – intended to foster evidence-based exploration with a modern scientific approach to refine the therapeutic applicability of cannabis-based medicines in the Czech Republic.  ICCI will identify, coordinate and support global research priorities for the advancement of cannabis and cannabinoid treatments through a multidisciplinary evidence based approach that incorporates innovative tools and approaches.

“As a medical cannabis patient who has been benefiting from it use for 14 years, I have felt a responsibility to ensure that other patients in the US, and now globally, have the choice to utilize cannabis treatments,” said Steph Sherer, executive director of Americans for Safe Access. “The creation of the ICCI is an integral step in fulfilling that commitment. The work of the ICCI will remove barriers to access for patients globally by bringing together the current knowledge base for cannabis research as it relates to biomedicine, life sciences and policy sciences to create a platform for sharing, exploration and education.”

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Important developments in the federal courts and the state legislature

Steph ShererASA Executive Director Steph Sherer visited six cities in California last week to talk about local and state medical cannabis policies. ASA will be reporting back on what she heard from members about our proposed “Points of Unity” for commercial medical cannabis regulations in the state and other issues soon.  

A federal judge in Sacramento said last week that she was “very seriously” considering whether or not medical cannabis is misclassified by the federal government. Her ruling will affect nine defendants in federal court, but it may also have national implications. In a separate case, a judge granted the Berkeley Patients Group a temporary reprieve in a federal civil asset forfeiture case.

Assembly Member Marc Levine (D-San Rafael) introduced ASA-sponsored legislation to protect medical cannabis patients who need an organ transplant. Meanwhile, lawmakers have started the controversial debate about regulating commercial medical cannabis activity in the state. Read about a new law enforcement-sponsored bill to license medical cannabis business and another measure to prevent negative environmental impact associated with medical cannabis growing below. These are just two of the growing number of medical cannabis bills on the table in Sacramento this year.

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ASA's organ transplant bill introduced, Steph Sherer tours CA

CA Assembly Member Marc LevineCalifornia Assembly Member Marc Levin (D-San Rafael) has just introduced ASA-sponsored legislation to protect medical cannabis patients who need an organ transplant from life-threatening discrimination. Legal patients can be denied an organ transplant right now based solely on their status as a medical cannabis patient, but AB 258 will protect patients and save lives. 

Click here to read more about AB 258 and see a new video about the bill.

Do you have questions or input about AB 258, state regulation and licensing, or local medical cannabis issues? ASA Executive Director Steph Sherer is in town this week, and she wants to talk to you. Steph is talking to medical cannabis patients and other stakeholders about their role in local and state politics in a series of events entitled “Our Health Is In Our Hands.” Look for appearances in San Diego, West Hollywood, San Francisco, Sacramento, and Santa Rosa this week in the Events section of this message. 

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Our Health Is In Our Hands

ASA Executive Director Steph Sherer will be touring California between February 8th and 15th to talk to patients and other stakeholders about the local and state work that needs to get done on medical cannabis between now and November of 2016, when voters are likely to decide on an adult use ballot measure. A lot is up in the air between now and then.

Will regulations for commercial medical cannabis be good, bad, or both? Will the state legislature finally protect legal patients from discrimination? Will cities and counties ban distribution and cultivation, or keep moving forward with regulations allowing local access?

The answer to each question is that it is up to us. Steph’s talk is entitled “Our Health Is In Our Hands,” because responsibility for making sure that patients’ needs are met and rights are respected lies with us – the grassroots medical cannabis community. If we don’t take our message and vision to City Councils, Boards of Supervisors, and state lawmakers; no one else will. Don’t miss a chance to be a part of this important conversation about your community and state. Check the Events section for a list of talks statewide.

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Medical Cannabis in California - Live Google Hangout

Let’s hang out and talk about medical cannabis in California tomorrow night. Join ASA Executive Director Steph Sherer and me for a live Google Hangout online at 7:00 PM. We will be talking about:

  • The outcome of a key vote on a medical cannabis licensing bill in the Assembly Public Safety Committee on Thursday afternoon – including a discussion of the latest amendments
  • A bill that allows patients and caregivers to receive reasonable compensation if their legal medical cannabis or plants are damaged or destroyed by the police
  • A proposed bill that will save patients’ lives by preventing discrimination against medical cannabis users in organ transplants
  • Local bans, referendums, and initiatives
  • The biggest and most important citizen lobby day yet on Monday, August 4, in Sacramento


The decisions lawmakers make this summer could affect you and your loved ones for years to come. You need to be a part of the conversation, so don’t miss this chance.

What:  Medical Cannabis in California - A Live Google Hangout with Steph Sherer & Don Duncan

When:  7:00 PM (PDT) * Thursday, June 26, 2014

Copy this URL into your web browser to join the conversation:
https://plus.google.com/u/0/events/cjln9v0ds1rf99csiuvi52eplrc

A Google Hangout is a live interactive event online, which you can join on your computer or mobile device. The event is free.

Don’t forget to register and make travel arrangements for the California Citizen Lobby Day in Sacramento on Monday, August 4, 2014. I will make an appointment for you to meet with your Assembly Member and Senator when you register.

See you tomorrow night!


ASA’s DC Conference is underway!

Photo: Jim Tozzi, former OMB and regulatory expert, is the first speaker at the ASA conf @safeaccess #unity14 #mmot #mmjASA’s National Medical Cannabis Unity Conference is underway at the Mayflower Renaissance Hotel in the heart of Washington, DC. More than two hundred and fifty patients, scientists, industry workers, and other stakeholders will meet for a second day today, before taking their message to the halls of Congress tomorrow afternoon.

The opening speaker yesterday morning acknowledged that the standing-room only crowd might be surprised to see someone like him at a conference like this. Jim Tozzi, PhD., who holds a Doctorate degree in Economics and Business Administration from the University of Florida, is a national expert in the politics and practice of government regulation. Dr. Tozzi is an influential player in Washington, DC. He worked for five consecutive Presidential Administrations, including service as the senior regulatory policy official at the White House Office of Budget and Management; and was appointed to the Administrative Conference of the United States, the administrative agency responsible for overseeing the federal regulatory process.

Dr. Tozzi is also the author of the Data Quality Act, a law that requires government regulation to be based on good science. ASA sued the Department of Health and Human Services using the Data Quality Act in 2004. Although that lawsuit was ultimately unsuccessful, it marked an important milestone in our efforts to influence the administrative agencies in hopes of harmonizing federal policies with the laws of the states that already permit medical cannabis use. It was also the beginning of an important association between Dr. Tozzi and ASA Executive Director Steph Sherer. Steph regards this unlikely ally as a mentor, and when a reporter asked Dr. Tozzi in 2004 what he thought of Steph’s work, he replied “She is doing God’s work.”

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Win a Free Vapor Pen at Safe Access Night – San Francisco November 16

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Someone who comes to Safe Access Night at the San Francisco Bulls pro hockey game on Saturday, November 16, will win a free ASA Cloud Vaporizer Pen! The Vape Cloud limited edition vaporizer pen has an ASA-logo, comes in our signature color, and has a lifetime guarantee. Someone will get this $70 value for free on Saturday night. Will it be you?

Buy your tickets for Safe Access Night at the San Francisco Bulls game on November 16 right now. A portion of the proceeds will benefit ASA’s important medical cannabis campaigns.

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Why I am Going to Sacramento

Nothing happens in the state legislature just because it should. Sometimes laws get passed because those with a financial interest in the outcome influence lawmakers. In some cases, political favors get traded to get something done. And all too often, lobbyists are the only voices lawmakers hear when they make choices that affect citizens. That is what is happening with medical cannabis in Sacramento right now, and I hope you will join me there next month to change that conversation for the better.

Medical cannabis patients and other stakeholders are meeting in Sacramento May 4-6 for the California Medical Cannabis Policy Summit and Lobby Day. The goals of the event are to develop strategies and skills necessary to adopt beneficial legislation for medical cannabis this year, and to take that message to lawmakers in person. Americans for Safe Access (ASA) and our partners at Californians to Regulate Medical Marijuana (CRMM); a coalition of patients, cultivators, organized labor, and others; is organizing this event to be sure that patients are at the table when important decisions about regulating medical cannabis are made this year.



You can help shape the future. Last year, we brought hundreds of patients to the State Capitol and helped push medical cannabis legislation further than anyone thought possible. Lawmakers noticed our grassroots coalition and started to take us more seriously. We need that influence now more than ever. Bills to regulate cultivation, distribution, and testing of medical cannabis are on the table right now. Proposals about additional taxation are on the way. We cannot afford to be silent right now. Someone is going to influence lawmakers on good and bad legislation this year. If it is not you, it will be lobbyists, law enforcement, and others who want to roll back safe access in California.

We will have a special fundraising reception on Saturday night, and then spend all day Sunday building strategies and skills for the citizen lobby day on Monday. We will start on Monday with a press conference, and then we hope to visit every lawmaker in Sacramento to talk about what we want to see in California. We will all meet back for a complimentary VIP reception on Monday evening.

Register today for the California Medical Cannabis Policy Summit and Lobby Day. This may be the most important thing you can do for medical cannabis right now.

We have a great opportunity to do something positive for patients, cultivators, workers, and others. If lawmakers from all over the state hear in person from constituents in their Districts, we can show them that there is a safe political space to stand up for medical cannabis. That is why I am going to Sacramento: to make a difference. Will you be there with me?