Raise Your Hand Texas, a nonprofit organization dedicated to improving education in Texas, conducted this poll in October of 2020. They surveying Texans from all walks of life and found that 50% of Republicans/conservatives support legalizing and taxing marijuana. Meanwhile, 66% of moderates, 71% of independents and more than 75% of Democrats/liberals support the idea.
Generating revenue is one important reason we should repeal prohibition. Doing so would also free up valuable public safety resources, keep peaceful Texans from needlessly being arrested and prosecuted for marijuana possession, and ensure product safety with testing and labeling standards. It’s time for a new way forward!
Current laws are harsh and unreasonable. Even with the legalization of hemp and diversion programs in every major city, more than 45,000 Texans were arrested for marijuana possession last year. A conviction triggers a permanent criminal record and a lifetime of collateral consequences.
In addition to needlessly derailing tens of thousands of lives per year, maintaining prohibition wastes our state’s valuable public safety resources. It’s time for a change!
While some details are still being ironed out, our Texas Capitol is now open to the public!
The 87th Texas Legislature will convene next Tuesday, Jan. 12, marking the beginning of our 140-day session. We’re working with our coalition partners to host a Legislative Advocacy Workshop that evening at 7pm to share exactly what protocols will be in place for citizen participation, including testimony during committee hearings. Register here.
The State Preservation Board has announced some of the COVID restrictions in place at the Capitol. Here’s what we know:
Building Public Hours: 9AM – 6PM, Monday – Friday (Closed Saturday/Sunday for cleaning.)
Public Health Precautions:– The public may only enter via the north door of the Capitol and masks are required.- COVID-19 testing is highly recommended and easily accessible on the north plaza at no expense. No personal data will be collected. Some legislators may require visitors to be tested for in-person meetings, which will require an appointment.- Public visitor capacity limits will be observed and social distancing required in all public areas at all times. No public tours or groups or sponsored event space will be available.
The House and Senate will make their own rules relating to how each chamber does business and how committees will operate. The Senate is expected to require a COVID test for anyone offering committee testimony. The House is not expected to do so.
In spite of the tremendous challenges of 2020, marijuana law reform continues to be a uniting (and winning) issue!
Nationwide: Four states repealed marijuana prohibition, bringing the total number of legal states to fifteen, and Mississippi became the thirty-sixth’s state to legalize medical cannabis. For the first time, the US House of Representatives voted to repeal federal marijuana prohibition.
Texas: Led by district/county attorneys, every major metro area of Texas has now instituted some kind of diversion or cite/release program to mitigate the harm cause by prohibition. Legalization is on the table for serious conversation and Texas lawmakers have already introduced dozens of cannabis bills for the upcoming legislative session.
To set ourselves up for success in 2021, let’s finish 2020 strong!
1) Membership: Become a member of Texans for Responsible Marijuana policy with a contribution toward our efforts! All donations support our work in Texas! (Credit Card | PayPal | Bitcoin)
We teamed up with our allies for a statewide conference call relating to the upcoming legislative session. We discussed proposed legislation, our policy objectives, COVID restrictions at the Capitol, ways for advocates to get involved, and how we’ll overcome challenges to earn support for marijuana law reform in Texas!
This virtual workshop will help attendees understand and engage in the legislative process. The only way to change marijuana laws in Texas is through the legislature. The Texas House of Representatives and Senate meet every two years for an intense legislative session that lasts approximately 140 days.
This workshop will cover: – Legislative Process and Timeline (Including COVID Restrictions) – Policy Priorities – Pre-Filed Bills – Preparing for Hearings – And more!
This workshop is free to attend, but registration is required. Click here to register and be sure to share this opportunity with your friends and family.
Join Informed Texas on January 18 for “Racial Disparity and Social Justice in Texas”, a timely examination of the intersection of cannabis and race. Esteemed presenters will cover:
ᐧ How Cannabis Works ᐧ Racial Disparity in Policing for Cannabis Possession ᐧ Expunction Workshop ᐧ Texas Patient Study: What Can We Learn? ᐧ Social Equity: How Can We Do Better? ᐧ Panels: ᐧ Examining Racial Disparity and Social Justice in Texas ᐧ Medicine, Science and Research
The Association of Cannabis Specialists (ACS) is hosting the first Texas Medical Cannabis Symposium on January 9, 2021. Attendees will get a comprehensive overview of the medicine, science, and policy issues facing practitioners, with reference to current Texas policy.
Presentations will be provided by some of the most notable experts and experienced cannabis specialists, including Mike Tagen Ph.D., Jordan Tishler M.D., Stacia Woodcock Pharm.D., Marcel Bonn-Miller, PhD and Julia Arnsten, M.D.
This CME activity provides 5 Category 1 AMA CME credits and is geared to legislators, legislative staff members, legal professionals and clinicians in the medical cannabis space. Learn more.
Jan 9, 2021 7:45AM–8:45AM · Endocannabinoid System 101 Presented by Mike Tagen, Ph.D. This presentation will discuss what is known about the function and structure of the endocannabinoid system and how it relates to human illness.
Jan 9, 2021 8:45AM–9:45AM · Medical Cannabis Overview Presented by Jordan Tishler, M.D. This presentation will discuss basics of therapeutics of human illness using cannabis and cannabinoids.
Jan 9, 2021 10:15AM–11:15AM · Cannabis Research This presentation will discuss areas of future research needed for better understanding of risk/benefits of cannabis.
Jan 9, 2021 11:15AM–12:15PM · Science on Pain/Opioid Reduction Presented by Julia Arnsten, M.D.
Jan 9, 2021 12:30PM–1:30PM · CBD Pharmacokinetics Presented by Stacia Woodcock, PharmD This presentation will discuss the interaction of CBD specifically with the human body and what risks/concerns that may present.
Jan 9, 2021 1:30PM–2:30PM · Medical Cannabis Policy Choices Presented by Jordan Tishler, M.D. This presentation will discuss needed legal and regulatory changes needed to better/adequately address the needs of clinicians as they provide care for patients.
“The Association of Cannabis Specialists ensures the highest standards in the practice of cannabis medicine, safeguards patient care with clinical best practices, and interfaces with other stakeholders in the cannabis community. We believe that patients are uniquely vulnerable and have very different needs than recreational users. We provide evidence and experience-based education for patients, cannabis clinicians, referring clinicians, and lawmakers to help them understand cannabis medicine and make informed decisions. We are an advocacy organization striving to provide guidance on best practices in the laws and regulations at the federal, state, and international levels.”
This event is sponsored by one of our allied organizations, the Foundation for an Informed Texas.
This Saturday at noon, we’re teaming up with our allies for a statewide conference call relating to the upcoming legislative session. Sign up here to join us!
We’ll discuss proposed legislation, our policy objectives, COVID restrictions at the Capitol, ways for advocates to get involved, and how we’ll overcome challenges to earn support for marijuana law reform in Texas!
Texas Marijuana Policy | Stateside Conference Call Saturday, December 12 at 12PM
We worked with our friends at Texas NORML to survey candidates seeking your vote to serve in the Texas House, Texas Senate, U.S. House, and U.S. Senate. In our Texas Marijuana Policy Voter Guide, you’ll find candidate responses to our survey as well as voting records for incumbents.
There’s still time to volunteer to help candidates who support your views. Contact them via email, social media, and/or their websites. You can sign up to do block walking, phone banking, or work a polling location. These are free ways to support those who support reform!
Early Voting is from October 13-30 and Election Day is November 3, 2020!