Let's Decriminalize Medford!

Your action here will end needless drug arrests of marginalized people & help millions suffering around the world discover the benefits of plant medicine!

Bay Staters for Natural Medicine & its coalition have successfully passed decriminalization resolutions in Somerville, Cambridge, and now Northampton, making national news and opening the door to resolutions in Boston, Worcester, and Medford. Our resolution (see an example draft here) for Medford will order the police department to cease arrests for possession of all controlled substances and allow residents to grow and exchange psychedelic plants.

People of color and people in poverty are disproportionately arrested for drug possession, despite similar use across all demographics. These arrests lose people their jobs, custody of their kids, and relationships with their families. Incarceration traumatizes people further, strips their access to federal student aid, gives them a record, and often makes drugs like fentanyl more accessible - these drugs are smuggled into jails! Moreover, psychedelic plants have healing properties our communities desperately need.

* Opioid Overdoses: In the month of May alone, nearly 170 of our friends, family members, and neighbors in Massachusetts lost their lives to opioid overdoses. A 2017 study of 44,000 Americans found that psychedelic use is associated with a 40% reduced risk of opioid abuse.

* Depression and Trauma: Massachusetts millennials have the highest rates of depression for their age group in the United States, and nearly one in five residents regardless of age suffer from depression. Naturally occurring plants and fungi, like psilocybin mushrooms, have been designated "breakthrough therapies" by the FDA for their substantial benefits in major depressive disorder.

A November 2020 study in the Journal of the American Medical Association found one in two patients put their major depression in remission after only two psilocybin therapy sessions, making it four times more effective than standard depression medications. A 2020 meta-analysis of randomized clinical trials dating back almost two decades found that psychedelic-assisted therapy is substantially effective in treating PTSD, depression, anxiety linked to terminal illness, and social anxiety linked to autism. Other studies confirm this result, finding that entheogens substantially reduce psychological distress and suicidal planning and ideation.

* Smoking: Smoking kills one in five of our friends, family members, and neighbors in Massachusetts. Apart from premature deaths and quality of life implications, smoking also cost our state hundreds of millions of dollars in Medicaid expenses every year. A 2017 study by Johns Hopkins medical faculty found that smoking patients achieved an 80% abstinence rate over six months with psilocybin mushroom assisted therapy—a 45% higher success rate than the most effective smoking cessation drug. Similarly, research suggests potential benefits for treating alcoholism.

* Cluster Headaches: Some Massachusetts residents suffer from cluster headaches, an extremely debilitating condition. A study by the American Academy of Neurology interviewed patients who tried psilocybin in the absence of any known cure. Five in seven reported psilocybin ended the headaches and one in two reported a complete termination of the ailment.

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