North America



For many patients, ailments make inhalation or ingestion of medicinal cannabis impossible. Left without options, many have come up with their own way to benefit from the medical aspects of cannabis – by suppository.

Cannabis activist and patient Jenn Bennett said she had previously used cannabis orally, but after learning about the application technique from other patients in the community she found that her body’s response was like nothing she had experienced before.

“I had such a good sleep, the effects of it were in 15 minutes. I was at times pain-free, and for me being pain-free is very rare,” said Bennett who uses cannabis to mainly treat her spinal stenosis, a condition that causes the spinal canal to narrow.


The just way to legalize marijuana in Canada

In 2001, Portugal decriminalized heroin, cocaine and cannabis. It remains a crime to profit from the sale or distribution of illegal drugs, but the user was not criminalized for possession. If a person is found with less than a 10-day supply, they must meet a three-person Commission for the Dissuasion of Drug Addiction, usually made up of a lawyer, a doctor and a social worker. The commission will recommend treatment, a minor fine or, as in most cases, no penalty at all.  

In 1990, one per cent of the Portuguese population was addicted to heroin. Portugal now has the lowest addiction rate of illegal drugs in all of Europe. After 14 decriminalized years, overall rates of drug use, drug addiction, drug overdose, HIV and accidental death have all gone down.


Sale of medical marijuana in Maryland probably won’t commence until 2017

People who want to buy marijuana in Maryland for medicinal purposes are probably going to have to wait until 2017, nearly four years after the state made it legal.

The Maryland Medical Cannabis Commission announced Monday that it will not award licenses to grow and process the drug until sometime in the summer — and industry officials say it will take an additional four to six months after that for the product to be ready to sell.

The commission said it has no target date for allowing retail dispensaries to begin operating and cannot say when marijuana will be available to patients.

Maryland’s medical cannabis program was approved by lawmakers in 2013, but it had to be adjusted multiple times before applications could be sought and submitted.


Ten factors that will influence and shape U.S. markets in the coming year

The Consolidated Appropriations Act - or Spending Bill - of 2016 continues protections for medical cannabis businesses following state law, but does not include additional reform to further facilitate cannabis commerce. Section 538 of the 2015 Spending Bill - the Rohrabacher-Farr Amendment, noted in last week’s report - was renewed in this year’s appropriations legislation. Combined with District Court Justice Charles Breyer’s defense of the law and continuing cuts to federal asset forfeiture programs, medical cannabis growers and dispensaries in states with legal systems will be able to operate with a significantly lessened threat of federal intervention.


Marijuana Dispensary Absorbing Sales Tax, Without Raising Prices


EUGENE, Ore. -- As an Oregon recreational marijuana sales tax goes into effect one pot shop in Eugene has decided to absorb the cost so customers don't have to pay more.


It's a financial burden Co-Owner of Jamaica Joel's Dispensary Travis Higbee is willing to take to keep prices low.


Nine Signs the World's War on Drugs Is Waning

Number one: Canada elects a marijuana-legalizing prime minister.

The global anti-drug regime has been in place for more than a half century now, but the prohibitionist consensus has been crumbling for at least 20 years, and the decomposition continued apace this year.

The international treaties that make up the legal backbone of international drug prohibition still stand, but they are under increasing attack at the United Nations, which will take them up again next year. They are increasingly being breached (especially by marijuana legalization at the national and sub-national level) and nibbled away at around the edges by moves like drug decriminalization and some harm reduction measures such as supervised injection facilities.


Parents find success treating kids' epilepsy, autism with cannabis oil

Ella Turkington, 5, has intractable epilepsy and autism. Her parents Kim and Rob Turkington administer cannabidiol (CBD) oil in conjunction with her pharmaceuticals — as more families are experimenting with pediatric cannabis — to treat her epilepsy. Photograph by: Tiffany Crawford , Vancouver Sun

Mention Taylor Swift and five-year-old Ella’s eyes light up like the Christmas tree in the corner of her Surrey living room.

The tree scrapes the ceiling, and Ella is eager to play with the decorations, but her parents have set up a barricade so she can’t reach the branches.

That’s because the young girl has severe epilepsy and autism, and, although she is nearly six, the cognitive ability of a toddler.


What’s at Stake at UNGASS 2016

In April 2016, the United Nations will have a chance to forge a smarter way forward for global drug policy.

In this video, George Soros, Bryan Stevenson, Kasia Malinowska-Sempruch, and a number of drug policy experts and advocates discuss why the time for reform is now. 




As Pot-Growing Expands, Electricity Demands Tax U.S. Grids

  • Equipment causes emissions equal to those of New Hampshire
  • The industry's energy use is undoing cities' efficiency gains

Get pot legalization right: Start by limiting spread of dispensaries

Our new federal government has made it clear that legalized marijuana is just a matter of time. A visitor to Canada would be forgiven for believing legalization has already taken place: Cannabis dispensaries have been popping up across the country, especially in the past few months.

Many of these dispensaries are geared toward providing cannabis to people with a prescription from their doctor. But recent reports from Toronto show that many dispensaries sell cannabis with little more than the customer’s signature on a waiver form. Although illegal, the outlets seem to be operating more openly, presumably on the assumption that if legalization is coming, enforcement will leave them alone. Thus far, with a few exceptions, they seem to be right.


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