Safe Access Now Director's Newsletter
Seeking a reasonable medical marijuana "safe harbor"
Volume 2 # 4. September 2004
These newsletters update you on the status of the SAN medical marijuana guidelines campaign. For more information on our project and the science behind it, please visit our website.
Here's news that has been a year in the making: The Safe Access Now booklet is back from the printer and available for activists to use in establishing a three-pounds-plus-corresponding-garden amount as a safe harbor for medical marijuana. I'm sure you'll find it is well worth the wait.
This beautiful 24 page, 8-1/2x11 inch, full color, glossy booklet, titled "Cannabis Yields and Dosage," covers the major areas of our campaign through a series of logical steps:
1) An introduction to why these guidelines are so important;
2) An evaluation of federal yields and dosage studies in the context of other scientific studies and "real world" issues that face patients and caregivers in their quest to obtain and use cannabis;
3) A copy of the sample ordinance that SAN has been promoting since last Spring, when we were able to resolve the question of whether a three or six pound baseline is more reasonable (we added a clause whereby with a doctor's approval the amount moves up to six pounds rather than, e.g., three pounds and one ounce);
4) An analysis of federal and state laws and court rulings that relate to the topic; and
5) A selection of California legal codes that affect people who are involved with medical marijuana.
This is not a how-to or a grow book, it is an analysis of scientific data and the law. We think this is one of the most important tools that medical marijuana activists in California or elsewhere can use to explain the complexities of medical marijuana and the ease of our SAN guidelines.
This PDF was designed so that you can search for words and find them in the text, or copy and paste text from the document to a word processor or other type of file. We think you will find it very handy and valuable, but please remember to credit Chris Conrad and Safe Access Now when you do so.
You can print out as many copies as you wish, or forward it to others as either a link or a PDF file. We will try to get the pages made into html in the near future, but for now the PDF and print versions are by far the most current and fully developed literature SAN has produced on the topic.
The Marijuana Policy Project (MPP) provided SAN with a grant to print 2,000 copies of this booklet to provide for activists to use in contacting and lobbying their elected officials who affect enforcement policy. These copies are intended to advance our guidelines effort, so we will provide FREE copies for city governments, county government, DAs, sheriffs, probation departments, state legislators, the Attorney General, California Medical Association, police chiefs, CNOA, etc.
However, due to all the changes in law that occurred after we asked MPP to fund this booklet (before SB 420 passed or the Raich decision and injunction), we added in information on legislation and court cases that expanded the booklet from 12 pages to 24 (including the cover). This material is so important to the guideline process and legal situation that it simply had to be addressed. As a result, we spent another $1000 on it, and we also need to ship out booklets and prepare a reprint for when this supply runs out.
Safe Access Now is committed to getting these documents into the hands of the people who most need to see them. We will send from 2 to 10 free copies to each and every SAN representative who is ready and willing to take them to their state and local policymakers and ask for the SAN guidelines to be adopted. This includes your own personal free copy to use as a reference and show people and news media, plus from one to nine copies to hand to your local officials. This print run is going fast, so please don't ask for more than you will really use. We only require that you let us know to whom you will give a copy of the booklet so we can manage our supply and report back to MPP.
While SAN can offer free shipping in some hardship cases, it will be extremely helpful if you can reimburse us for mailing expenses or pitch in toward the costs of doing a reprint next year. We hope to use the booklets to raise money for this. The cost of printing 10 books is $20. It costs $5 to print and mail a single copy of the book. Inside California, media rate (slow) postage for 10 books is $3, parcel post $6, Priority mail $6.50, and Express (overnight) $22. Prices to other regioins varies. Can you help defer these expenses?
To order a single copy, using PayPal, click here. To order a single copy by mail, please make out a check or money order for $5 out to either Chris Conrad or Family Council on Drug Awareness, and mail to: FCDA, PO Box 1716, El Cerrito CA 94530.
SAN point person Jason Fishbain got hold of an important document from the California Highway Patrol that seems to show a bad-faith effort by the CHP to disregard the law on patient and caregiver rights when it comes to transporting medical marijuana. He is heading up a new effort to rein in the rogue law enforcement agency through a class-action lawsuit. To do this will require a group of aggrieved patients to file for the injunction he is seeking to stop the CHP from enforcing any marijuana laws until the agency shows that it is competent to enforce and protect state medical use and cultivation provisions. If you have had an encounter in which the CHP took your medicine or arrested you, he is interested in hearing from you. Visit this URL to learn more or to make a donation to support the injunction against the CHP. http://www.stophippieprofiling.org/chp/chpguilty.htm.
All this comes at the same time that Americans for Safe Access (ASA) has filed numerous return of property cases for patients and caregivers across the state, and maverick attorney Bill McPike continues to challenge police in the Central Valley by serving notice on law enforcement that they are in violation of State law when they fail to appropriately enforce HS 11362.5 and 11362.7. He is now seeking a court order requiring them to enforce the medical marijuana sections of the Health and Safety Code.
SAN is a non-partisan organization dedicated to the proper implementation of uniform guidelines in all of California's counties in compliance with H&S code 11362.5, the Compassionate Use Act of 1996. It was founded by Chris Conrad with Ralph Sherrow and has activists in about half the counties of California. We are an educational and activist organization only, and in no way supply medicine. Our proposal has been to stop the arrests as well as the prosecution of patients by creating a safe harbor of presumed compliance with the law.
We work with all levels of government to achieve this goal.
Since the federal government's IND program has established more than six pounds per year of marijuana as a safe and effective standard, with some patients receiving even more, SAN proposes that patients should be allowed to cultivate and consume that amount as a reasonable level of compliance. However, since many patients use less than that amount, we offer a compromise of allowing up to 3 pounds of processed cannabis bud per patient per year, which typically requires a canopy area of 100 square feet. Any amount of plants could be grown to fill in this area without exceeding the yield, but since a 5 year federal sentences is mandatory for growing 100 or more plants, we advocate 99 plants as the voluntary ceiling for patients. In addition, our proposals allow a physician to write a note that will exempt patients who need more from being bound by these figures. See our website for more details.
Safe Access Now does not charge for the time and materials we expend to advance the safe harbor proposal for patients, but that does not mean it does not cost money to run this campaign. If you can help with a donation of any size, please send it to our financial coordinator, Chris Conrad, with a note saying it is intended for Safe Access Now work. If you plan to donate $100 or more and want a tax deduction, we can arrange a fiscal sponsor. Cash is great, but something of a mailing risk.
We do not have a bank account in our name, so please make
checks out to either
Safe Access Now, PO Box 1716, El Cerrito CA 94530.
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