The Advocate: Weekly Cannabis News

New research underway in California

On Tuesday, UC Berkeley announced a new Cannabis Research Center that will be dedicated to exploring environmental & societal impacts post-legalization.

At the first-of-its-kind facility, a dedicated group of researchers, law experts, and environmental scientists will be tasked with discovering the relations between three core areas: policy and regulation, environmental impacts, and cannabis producing communities.

“This is a rapidly changing industry, and no one really knows where it is headed. Everyone is playing catch up to a certain extent, and we believe researchers have an important role in bringing independent scientific information to conversations around cannabis policy,” stated co-director Ted Grantham in a recent interview with Berkeley News.

Californian farmers will be eager to see the results of the program as communities are still adjusting to a handful of new rules and regulations placed in 2018.

Director of Cannabis wanted in Florida

Newly elected Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried is hoping to grow the state’s industrial hemp industry.

Fried recently announced an ongoing search for someone who is “passionate about cannabis” to fill a roll that would work directly with policy makers & local farmers – in hopes of creating fair & equitable policies that will encourage cultivators to participate.

The appointed director will also monitor the states Medical Marijuana Program and will work with Florida Department of Health officials to ensure safety & compliance regulations are being met by all state producers.

Baltimore no longer pursuing minor cannabis possession cases (sort of)

State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby announced this week that her department is working to vacate almost 5,000 cannabis related convictions within city limits.

Mosby also promised to stop prosecuting cannabis possession cases, an idea that a handful of officials, like interim police commissioner Garry Tuggle, weren’t too fond of. “Arrests will continue,” said Tuggle in response to Mosby’s updates.

Mosby’s bold, but needed updates now come with a line of confusion; without the full backing of important public officials, it will be difficult to fully end pursuits of minor cannabis-related arrests. However, Mosby does wield the power to help establish & enforce expungement processes, which have long been overdue in a state that continues to disproportionately arrest people of color.

New survey sheds light on veteran support

On Wednesday, Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America released an internal survey that focuses on trending veteran related issues.

The nonprofit that represents more than 400,000 veterans highlighted 6 key-takeaways in their findings, with #6 being the “utilization of medicinal cannabis”.

According to the results, 90% of IAVA members support researching cannabis for medicinal purposes, with 89% indicating interest in using cannabis as an alternative treatment option.

VA physicians are currently only allowed to discuss medicinal cannabis with veterans and can under no circumstances recommend it. But that could soon change with the help of ongoing research that shows a severe need for the inclusion of medicinal cannabis.

John Kuster

As Social Media Coordinator, John oversees all things related to getting Revolution Enterprises' unique message out. An Iowa native, John joined the Revolution team to help educate, and inform the public on cannabis and all it has to offer. Prior to joining Revolution, John helped multiple companies grow and expand their reach, ranging from the tech industry to the world of international football. He is thrilled to be working in a rapidly expanding market, and is proud to represent Illinois patients and cannabis advocates across the globe.