Globe and Mail, 01 Jun 2016 - David Hill says the sunny southern steps of the Vancouver Art Gallery offer him a perfect and very public spot for his urban pop-up cannabis crop. He originally wanted to start growing his collection of more than 100 seedlings across the street at the courthouse, but there was too much shade when he scouted locations for his effort to "overgrow the government" and get it to immediately decriminalize marijuana.
New York Post, 31 May 2016 - BOGOTA, Colombia - The streets of Colombia's largest open-air drug market look like a war zone following a police sweep through one of Bogota's most dangerous neighborhoods. More than 2,500 riot police officers and heavily armed soldiers participated in a raid that began Saturday in the capital's "Bronx" area, nicknamed for its comparison to the troubled New York neighborhood.
Law Times, 30 May 2016 - If the federal government is serious about an evidence-based approach to drug policy, it shouldn't stop at cannabis when it comes to regulating drugs that are currently under prohibition, drug policy lawyers say. With the new federal government, "I think the rhetoric seems to be much more positive in terms of treating drugs as a health issue," says Eugene Oscapella, a lawyer and professor of law at the University of Ottawa. "If you're honest about treating drugs as a health issue, then you do not use the criminal justice system primarily [to deal with it]," he says.
Toronto Sun, 30 May 2016 - A Real Case Of Reefer Madness My police source, Deep Toke, has slipped me what he claims is a transcript from the Project Claudia raids. The timing is perfect. Toronto's board of health meets Monday to hash out the sale of weed in our fair city. Mayor John Tory and police Chief Mark Saunders cracked down on storefront pot dispensaries Thursday. Project Claudia hit 43 shops and bagged 90 people on trafficking raps.
Los Angeles Times, 09 May 2016 - Ten years ago in Los Angeles, Theresa Martinez was finally making progress in her long, painful struggle against drug addiction and the cycle of incarceration it fueled. But in order to continue her methadone program, she needed $200. Homeless, unemployed, and terrified of falling back into heroin addiction, she tried to get the money the only way she knew: selling drugs. Martinez was arrested for a $5 sale of cocaine, a felony that, absent aggravating factors, carried a three-year prison sentence. By global standards that penalty would have been unusual and harsh, especially since she plainly needed help and support - not incarceration. But here in the United States, Martinez faced an even worse fate. California law prescribes sentencing "enhancements" for anyone who has a prior drug-related felony conviction. Martinez was threatened with a nine-year sentence. Anguished, she took a plea deal for six years, bringing her lifetime total to 23 years behind bars, all for drugs.
Chicago Sun-Times, 09 May 2016 - Pot ticket option, fewer cops lead to lowest narcotic bust numbers in three decades, but special unit arrests up ' considerably' The war on drugs may not be over in Chicago, but it's in retreat. In 2015, total drug-related arrests dropped to the lowest level in three decades, a Chicago Sun- Times analysis of city crime data found.
Daily Mail, 09 May 2016 - A number of critical airline staff have tested positive for hardcore drugs and alcohol while on the job, leaving passengers concerned about the protocols in place to keep them safe in the air. At least 14 Australian airline and airport employees operating in 'safety sensitive' roles came to work affected by alcohol and drugs in 2015, according to The Daily Telegraph.
Ottawa Sun, 08 May 2016 - "If I look at five inmates I'm going to definitely find one of them that is bringing in some kind of contraband" The new high-tech body scanner coming to the Ottawa jail is touted as the "ultimate substitute for strip searching" and will give correctional officers a glimpse at an inmate's insides after it is installed within the next month.
Toronto Sun, 08 May 2016 - Weed the North. Queen's Park turned into a big puff of smoke Saturday afternoon as some 20,000 marijuana activists gathered near the King Edward VII statue, before rallying and walking in the 18th annual Global Marijuana March through the downtown core, spliffs in hand. While the federal Liberals made a campaign pledge to legalize marijuana, many of the parade-goers felt like the federal government was dragging its feet. "Thousands of people are still facing criminal charges," said event founder Neev, who refused to give his last name. "It should be legalized, it should be cheaper. It's so expensive because it's not legal yet. I appreciate the Liberals wanting to do it right, but the rollout is so slow." The Toronto event was one of the 100 marijuana parades scheduled in cities around the world.
Dayton Daily News, 08 May 2016 - Society Goes From Racist Approach to Empathy. The Rev. Mike Starks witnessed the destruction of crack cocaine, but not from the sidelines - he was a self-described gangster and drug addict before he became a minister.
Los Angeles Times, 08 May 2016 - Ex-Mexican President Says Both Sides of the Border Should Be Scared Former Mexican President Vicente Fox isn't the guy you would expect to see sporting a bright pink Donald Trump brand tie. Fox has had plenty to say about the Republican Party's presumptive presidential nominee - and none of it is complimentary. But then he has a point he wants to make:
The Age, 07 May 2016 - Addiction to painkillers is putting many Americans on a road that leads to heroin and an early grave, writes Andrew Purcell. The United States is in the grip of an unprecedented epidemic. In 2014, more than 47,000 people were killed by an overdose more than were killed by guns, or died in traffic accidents.
Sydney Morning Herald, 07 May 2016 - 'This generation is really sick' Addiction to painkillers is putting many Americans on a road that leads to heroin and an early grave, writes Andrew Purcell. The United States is in the grip of an unprecedented epidemic. In 2014, more than 47,000 people were killed by an overdose - more than were killed by guns, or died in traffic accidents.