Study: 24% of Cancer Patients Use Medical Marijuana, 74% Want More Info

According to a new study published in the journal Cancer, nearly one in four cancer patients have consumed medical marijuana in the past year, with more than one in five having consumed it in the past month.

“Cannabis is purported to alleviate symptoms related to cancer treatment, although the patterns of use among cancer patients are not well known”, states the study’s abstract. “This study was designed to determine the prevalence and methods of use among cancer patients, the perceived benefits, and the sources of information in a state with legalized cannabis.”

For the study, “A cross-sectional, anonymous survey of adult cancer patients was performed at a National Cancer Institute–designated cancer center in Washington State. Random urine samples for tetrahydrocannabinol provided survey validation.”

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Report: Marijuana Legalization May Have Led to Drop in Murder and Rape Rates in Washington and Oregon

A new report by the Washington State Institute for Public Policy (WSIPP) has found that marijuana legalization may have helped to reduce rape and murder rates in both Washington and Oregon.

In their second assessment report on the impact of marijuana legalization, WSIPP also found no evidence that marijuana legalization has increased marijuana usage rates among adults or adolescents, and found legalization to have no impact on hard drug use, property crimes or  violent crimes.

“[A]mong respondents under age 21, those living in counties with higher sales were significantly less likely to report use of cannabis in the past 30 days”, says Justin Strekal, poliyical director for NORML, speaking on the report. Stekal says the report shows “evidence that nonmedical legalization in Washington and Oregon may have led to a drop in rape and murder rates”.

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Las Vegas Gets 24-Hour Marijuana Store

Las Vegas has become one of the first places in the United States where marijuana can be purchased legally 24 hours a day.

The Las Vegas City Council has voted Wednesday in favor of allowing Oasis Cannabis, a legal marijuana shop in the city, to stay open 24 hours a day. Up until this point city code forced all marijuana outlets to close between by 3am, and open no earlier than 6am. The vote by the council was unanimous, with Mayor Carolyn Goodman abstaining from the vote given his son has financial interest in some marijuana-related businesses.

The vote by the council brings the city in line with North Las Vegas, which also allows its cannabis outlets to stay open 24 hours a day. Clark County Commissions voted on Tuesday to allow the 26 cannabis outlets in the county to stay open all-day.

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New Poll Finds Strong Support for Medical Cannabis Legalization Initiative Among Utah Voters

A strong majority of Utah voters, including a majority of those who are “very active” in the Mormon Church, support an initiative to legalize medical cannabis, according to new polling.

Utah voters are overwhelming in favor of legalizing the medical use of cannabis, a new poll has found. 74% stated that they are in favor of a proposed initiative that would allow qualified patients to possess, use and purchase (from licensed dispensaries) cannabis medicines such as edibles, tinctures and topicals (lotions, ointments, etc.). Just 22% oppose the proposal, with 4% undecided.

Although the LDS church has come out strongly against legalizing medical cannabis, 63% of voters who say they’re “very active” in the Mormon Church support the legalization of medical cannabis, with just 33% – less than one in three – opposed.

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Massachusetts Supreme Court Rules Roadside Drunk Driving Tests Not Valid for Marijuana

The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court ruled today that field sobriety tests used to determine if someone is drunk cannot be legally used as conclusive evidence that a motorist is under the influence of marijuana.

Cannabis Becomes Legal TonightAccording to the Associated Press, the Supreme Judicial Court said it was reasonable for police officers to testify — as non-expert witnesses — only to their observations about how individuals performed during sobriety tests. However, the court ruled that officers are not allowed to tell juries if defendants passed or failed such tests, nor offer their own opinions on whether a driver was too high to be behind the wheel.  The ruling came in a case of Thomas Gerhardt, who was charged with impaired driving in 2013.

The court noted there currently is no reliable scientific test for marijuana impairment comparable to tests for blood alcohol content. In drunken-driving cases, results of field sobriety tests can be correlated with blood alcohol readings as evidence of impairment. The lack of such a test for marijuana has taken on greater significance in states such as Massachusetts that have legalized the recreational use of marijuana for adults, but where driving under the influence of cannabis remains a serious crime.

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Peru: Committee Unanimously Approves Bill to Legalize Medical Cannabis

Peru’s Congressional Committee on National Defense has given approval to legislation that would legalize medical cannabis.

According to Congressman Alberto de Belaunde saidö, “The Commission on Defense has unanimously decided to propose the law that decriminalizes the medicinal use of cannabis”. Approval of the measure comes amid public outcry over a police raid on a makeshift cannabis lab run by mothers seeking to soothe the symptoms of their sick children.

The bill – introduced by President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski – will now go before the nation’s full Congress for consideration.

According to Euro News, earlier this year, an Ipsos poll found that 65 percent of Peruvians support legalizing cannabis for medical purposes.

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Community “Heartbroken” After Washington Budtender Found Deceased, Two of Three Suspects in Police Custody

A budtender from Lucid Cannabis Company in Cheney, Washington has been found deceased after being abducted.

Cameron Smith

(Photo: Sofia Jaramillo, Leafly)

Cameron Smith’s body was discovered by Spokane County Rescue just off State Route 904 west of Cheney, on September 15 around 3 p.m., states Leafly. Police described the location of Smith’s body as being “concealed in heavy cover” several feet from the roadway. This was near where authorities last made contact with Smith’s cell phone and slightly south of where his vehicle was located.

According to Stacia Shirley, manager at Lucid, says the team is “heartbroken” from the news. “We’re just trying to push forward with a strong face, and that just shows what a strong influence he was on us. He would want us to stay strong,” she says.

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Federal Bill Introduced to Eliminate Mandatory Minimum Sentences for all Drug Offenses

Legislation to end mandatory minimum sentences for all drug offenses has been filed in the U.S. House of Representatives.

The legislation – H.R. 3800 – was introduced by Representative Maxine Walters, a Democrat from California’s 43rd legislative district. It would end the practice of applying mandatory minimum sentences to offenses involving illegal substances. Mandatory minimum sentences require judges to give offenders a specific – and typically harsh – sentence regardless of extenuating circumstances.

Mandatory minimum sentences for drug crimes was greatly scaled back under President Obama’s terms as president. However, current President Trump and his Attorney General Jeff Sessions recently reversed much of the changes made by the Obama Administration regarding mandatory minimums, making Representative Walters’ proposal incredibly important and relevant to the times.

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California Legislature Passes Resolution Urging Feds to Remove Marijuana from Schedule 1

A resolution urging U.S. Congress to remove marijuana as a schedule 1 controlled substance has been approved overwhelmingly by California’s Legislature.

Senate Joint Resolution 5, “Relative to federal rescheduling of marijuana from a Schedule I drug”, was introduced by Senator Jeff Stone with cosponsored Senator Scott Wiener and Senator John Moorlach. It was approved in the Senate in April with a 34 to 2 vote, and was approved by the Assembly last week with a vote of 60 to 10. The resolution reads:

“Resolved by the Senate and the Assembly of the State of California, jointly, That the Legislature urges the Congress of the United States to pass a law to reschedule marijuana or cannabis and it’s its derivatives from a Schedule I drug to an alternative schedule, therefore allowing the legal research and development of marijuana or cannabis for medical use and allowing for the legal commerce of marijuana or cannabis so that businesses dealing with marijuana or cannabis can use traditional banks or financial institutions for their banking needs, which would result in providing a legal vehicle for those businesses to pay their taxes, including, but not limited to, payroll taxes, unsecured property taxes, and applicable taxes on the products sold in accordance with state and local laws”.

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Study Finds Road Fatalities Unaffected by Marijuana Legalization

The legalization of marijuana in Washington and Colorado has had no impact on road fatality rates, according to a new study published by the American Journal of Public Health.

Researchers at the University of Texas evaluated “motor vehicle crash fatality rates in the first 2 states with recreational marijuana legalization” and compared them with “motor vehicle crash fatality rates in similar states without recreational marijuana legalization.”  They used the US Fatality Analysis Reporting System to determine the annual numbers of motor vehicle crash fatalities between 2009 and 2015 in Washington, Colorado, and 8 control states. They compared “year-over-year changes in motor vehicle crash fatality rates (per billion vehicle miles traveled) before and after recreational marijuana legalization with a difference-in-differences approach that controlled for underlying time trends and state-specific population, economic, and traffic characteristics.”

It was found that; “Pre–recreational marijuana legalization annual changes in motor vehicle crash fatality rates for Washington and Colorado were similar to those for the control states.” Post–recreational marijuana legalization changes in motor vehicle crash fatality rates for Washington and Colorado also did not significantly differ from those for the control states.

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