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    HomeNewsWeHo City's Forum on Magic Mushrooms is Now Available on WeHoTV YouTube...

    WeHo City’s Forum on Magic Mushrooms is Now Available on WeHoTV YouTube Channel

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    The City of West Hollywood hosted a free Community Educational Forum about the possible state-level decriminalization of mushrooms (Psilocybin) and certain hallucinogenic drugs. The Forum, which took place on Tuesday, July 25, is now available for viewing on the city’s WeHoTV YouTube Channel for those who missed it, or those who wish to revisit event. The forum featured a moderated panel discussion with experts in mental health, legislation, and drug policy reform.

    “The city council unanimously supported this townhall idea a while back,” said Mayor Pro Tem John Erickson. “The city has a long standing tradition for putting our foot in the door when it comes to alternative medicines, alternative ways in which we look at the world, and really what does that do for the city? Obviously, we can go all the way back to cannabis legalization and the fight for that, and to what we are now. But ultimately these things are an integral role to the LGBTQ community and how people way back when were dealing with HIV and AIDS to continually looking at mental health, behavioral health, and everything like that, so I sponsored this event with the support of my amazing colleagues and and it all actually is because of Jackie Subeck, our co-producer tonight.”

    WeHo City hosts Community Educational Forum on Psilocybin – Photo courtesy of WeHo Business License Commissioner Catherine Eng

    “Frankly, it’s not possible for our city to lead on conversations like this had it not been for the bravery of so many individuals who risked and sacrificed their lives to get us to this point,” said council member Chelsea Byers. “And often because of government’s decisions, decisions made in rooms like this, and other places in this country. Those people have had to sacrifice way too much to get us to this point. So I just want to hold space and honor those contributions as we start this conversation about the future and where we’re going and hope that part of what government does is hold more space and reconcile those tragedies that have occurred because of decisions made by places like this.”

    The panel discussion was moderated by Jackie Subeck, Chief Executive Officer and founder of Hey Jackpot, a West Hollywood-based cannabis consulting firm with clients nationwide. Subeck played a role in the passage of 2016’s California Proposition 64, the Adult Use of Marijuana Act, which legalized adult cannabis use in the state and has worked closely with cities including Los Angeles, Beverly Hills, and West Hollywood to develop licensing and regulations that are fair, equitable, and inclusive of everyone. Subeck is also co-producer of this Community Educational Forum.

    Community Educational Forum panelists include:

    • Eva Altobelli, M.D., Diplomat of the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology who specializes in psychedelic and addiction psychiatry, and founder & CEO of Home-LA, a clinician-run, transformational healing center committed to providing a safe and supportive environment, specializing in Trauma-Informed Psychotherapy, Pharmacology and Addiction Treatment.
    • Sgt. Terry Blevins, Board Member of Law Enforcement Action Partnership (LEAP), a nonprofit including police, prosecutors, judges, corrections officials, and other law enforcement officials advocating for criminal justice and drug policy reforms that seek to make communities safer and more just.
    • Joshua Kappel, Esq., founding partner of Vicente LLP, where he has helped shaped cannabis and psychedelic policies while representing leading companies in these emerging fields. Kappel co-authored Colorado’s Natural Medicine Health Act ballot initiative, which was passed by the voters in 2022.
    WeHo City hosts Community Educational Forum on Psilocybin – Photo courtesy of WeHo Business License Commissioner Catherine Eng

    Psilocybin, commonly referred to as “magic mushrooms,” “mushrooms,” or “shrooms,” is a chemical obtained from certain types of fresh or dried mushrooms. Psilocybin is naturally occurring and is typically consumed for its hallucinogenic effects. It is part of a group of drugs known as psychedelics, which trigger changes in perception, mood, and thought.

    Psilocybin, like some other psychedelics, has been used for centuries within certain indigenous cultures as a healing agent during rituals and religious ceremonies. In the 1950s and ’60s, there was some scientific research conducted into the benefits of psychedelics when administered in the context of psychotherapy. Political backlash and the onset of the government’s war on drugs in the 1970s forced much of this research to come to an end.

    Modern research has reignited an interest in the use of psychedelics, including psilocybin, as an effective treatment for a broad range of health issues. It is believed that psilocybin has the potential to treat a range of psychiatric and behavioral disorders, including depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder, smoking cessation and other addictions, cocaine addiction, and cancer-related or other end-of-life psychological distress.

    Psilocybin, like cannabis, is a Schedule 1 substance under the 1970s federal Controlled Substances Act (CSA). This means that psilocybin is characterized by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) as having “no currently accepted medical use and a high potential for abuse.” As a result, and like cannabis, its use is illegal under Federal law.

    In 2019, Denver became the first city in the nation to pass an ordinance to decriminalize hallucinogenic mushrooms for personal use. In 2020, voters in Oregon approved ballot measures to legalize and regulate psilocybin therapy and to decriminalize drug possession more broadly. Since then, voters in Oakland, California and Washington, D.C. have taken similar actions.

    There have been attempts to bring similar decriminalization ballot measures forward in California. Decriminalize California is a group attempting to bring forward a state-level initiative in California. The effort failed to collect enough signatures to qualify for November 2022, but the group has said it will continue its efforts. On December 16, 2022, California State Senator Scott Wiener re-introduced a bill (SB 58, Controlled substances: decriminalization of certain hallucinogenic substances) that would decriminalize the possession and personal use of certain psychedelic drugs. The following substances are included in SB 58: psilocybin, psilocyn, Dimethyltryptamine (“DMT”), mescaline (excluding peyote), and ibogaine. Prior, in 2021, Senator Wiener’s psychedelics decriminalization legislation (SB 519), passed the Senate and the two Assembly Committees but was held in the Assembly Appropriations Committee.

    In August 2022, the West Hollywood City Council adopted a Resolution declaring offenses related to psilocybin mushrooms are a low enforcement priority. In the City of West Hollywood, the West Hollywood Sheriff’s Station has not prioritized enforcing psilocybin mushroom-related offenses and there have been no recent arrests for these offenses locally.

    For more information about the Community Educational Forum, please contact Hernan Molina, City of West Hollywood Governmental Affairs Liaison, at (323) 848-6364 or at [email protected].

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    Catherine
    Catherine
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    10 months ago
    Catherine
    Catherine
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    10 months ago

    As science and medical fields evolve- more is understood about psilocybin and cannabis. These substances have been used for centuries by native/indigenous cultures and the ‘western world’ is just catching up to the understandings of their use.

    Psilocybin is proven to help people suffering from terminal illness and PTSD- it’s also helpful in end of life care.

    Weho should continue to explore how it can help our residents and the general public.

    Just Whacky
    Just Whacky
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    Reply to  Catherine
    10 months ago

    WeHo officials knows what they are doing. People are so resistant to change. Everyone freaked out about cannabis and so far society has not collapsed.

    Brandon
    Brandon
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    10 months ago

    All that writing and no link to the YouTube video?

    Enough!
    Enough!
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    10 months ago

    A forum made up of only those in favor of decriminalizing yet another drug. As if we don’t have enough problems already. (Why was that grown adult sitting like that while on stage during a public forum? What is she a four year old? She looks ridiculous. Maybe she was already trippin’)

    Mr Mister
    Mr Mister
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    Reply to  Enough!
    10 months ago

    Don’t put your feet on the furniture and don’t do drugs

    Catherine
    Catherine
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    Reply to  Enough!
    10 months ago
    Just Whacky
    Just Whacky
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    Reply to  Enough!
    10 months ago

    This was an informational forum, not a debate, so naturally everyone will be in favor or at least curious. Wait for the comments.

    Mr Mister
    Mr Mister
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    10 months ago

    oh brother

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