Facebook plans to loosen cannabis policies

Facebook has recently suggested that they plan to loosen their policy on cannabis promotion after years of banning cannabis businesses.

The company held an internal presentation to discuss how they would go about changing the strict policies currently in place. Currently, marijuana businesses are not allowed to sell or even promote their products on the social media platform, even if it is legal in the state they’re operating in.

“Our policies at the moment do not allow for the sale of marijuana on the platform,” company officials said during an internal presentation. “We want to consider whether we can loosen this restriction, especially in relation to medical marijuana, legal marijuana and brick and mortar stores.”


Israeli approves compassionate use of MDMA to treat PTSD patients

The popular party drug, MDMA, also known as ecstasy, has officially been approved in Israel as a treatment for Post-traumatic stress disorder.

An Israeli government representative learned about the benefits of using MDMA to treat PTSD from the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS), a California-based organization. Following their research, Israel has approved using MDMA to treat 50 patients suffering from PTSD.

“The ministry is taking this seriously and with appropriate caution, an in-depth investigation has been carried out,” Ministry of Health official Bella Ben-Gershon told sources. “There is a considerable population in Israel of people suffering from PTSD that is resistant to other treatment.”


San Francisco expunges more than 9,000 marijuana convictions

The city of San Francisco has announced that it has expunged more than 9,300 cannabis related convictions from as far back as 1975.

“This makes San Francisco the first county in the country to complete the automated marijuana record clearance process,” according to a statement released by the office of San Francisco District Attorney George Gascón.

The expungement process for cannabis convictions is actually a law in California as stipulated by AB 1793, which is a part of proposition 64, the 2016 ballot initiative that legalized cannabis in the state. Since the law was passed, people have been allowed to petition their conviction, but that can often be a lengthy and expensive task.  


Ontario announces details for cannabis retail training

As the province of Ontario prepares to open retail cannabis stores in April, the details of the mandatory training that employees will receive was announced last week.

CannSell, as selected by the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario (AGCO), will be the only authorized program used to train the employees that will work at the 25 storefronts expected to open on April 1.

CannSell is a product of Lift & Co., a technology company aimed to inform Canadians about cannabis. The program was developed with MADD Canada and was commissioned by the AGCO last year.


London Ontario store will run under Tweed banner

Canopy Growth Corporation, Canada’s largest cannabis producer, has announced a pending partnership with Quebec-based company Couche-Tard to enter an agreement with a winner of Ontario’s cannabis store lottery.

Couche-Tard is an operator of 15,000 variety stores internationally under the Circle K brand and others. Together, the companies plan to open a store in London, Ontario. The store is expected to open at 1025 Wellingston Street South under the Canopy brand Tweed. The store and its branding are currently awaiting approval from the Alcohol Gaming Commission of Ontario (AGCO).

The application will now enter into a 15 day public notice period for members of the community to either file a complaint or a written submission on the proposed location.


Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez speaks out against racial and gender disparities in legal marijuana industry

Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez spoke out earlier this week against the obvious race and gender disparities that currently exist in the cannabis industry in states where it’s legal.

Ocasio-Cortez spoke at the US House Committee on Financial Services and called out the glaring issue that women and racial minorities are severely underrepresented in executive roles in the legal cannabis industry.


Mayor of Montreal says proposed cannabis laws are unfair

The Quebec provincial government has plans to implement a ban on smoking cannabis in any and all public spaces for the City of Montreal is making it clear that this would be impossible to enforce.

Bill 2 would enforce a province-wide ban on smoking cannabis in public spaces as well as raise the legal consumption age from 18 to 21.

The Mayor of Montreal Valerie Plante believes the city should be exempt from these rules if they are implemented and has recently spoken at public hearings to voice the city’s concerns about the bill. Both she and police Chief Sylvain Caron have state that the way of life in Montreal is different from other parts of the province and that it would be much more difficult to enforce the law.


Edmonton gives more bylaw violation tickets to tobacco smokers than cannabis smokers

The City of Edmonton has said that since cannabis became legal in Canada four months ago only three bylaw violation tickets have been given for smoking cannabis.

New rules were put into place in the city after they decided that they needed a way to oversee smoking tobacco and cannabis. A bylaw was passed so that smoking in public spaces is now extremely limited. Smoker must be at least 10 meters away from window, door and transit stops when smoking. There are also new restrictions when it comes to smoking in public places including playgrounds, cemeteries, outdoor pools and skating rinks.


Nova Scotia plans to add more cannabis retail stores

The Province of Nova Scotia has reported seeing slower than expected online cannabis sales and as such plans to add more retail stores.

Finance Minister Karen Casey said that the province has asked the Nova Scotia Liquor Corporation to add to their current 12 locations and in doing so, it would address some of the geographical that areas that aren’t currently being serviced with a retail store.

“We believed that online would address some of those areas of the province where there was a gap,” said Casey. “We’ve recognized that to date it has not materialized, so we have to look at how can we get out to other areas if online is not going to bring the consumer in.”


Canadian and UK researchers discover possible link between adolescent cannabis use and depression

A group of researchers from Canada and the United Kingdom report they have found strong evidence to support that consuming cannabis in adolescence will be more likely to develop depression later in life.

The researchers examined 11 studies from the mid-1990s and onward. They looked at people under the age of 18 who used cannabis for non-medical purposes that were then followed into adulthood to see how had developed clinical depression, anxiety or suicidal behavior. None of the studies looked at all three.


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