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Drug War Chronicle #587 - May 29, 2009

1. Feature: Effort to Bring Safe Injection Facility to New York City Getting Underway

Safe injection facilities for drug users have proven effective in Europe, Canada, and Australia. Now, harm reductionists and public health advocates are beginning a campaign to bring one to New York City.

2. Feature: Health Canada Adjusts Medical Marijuana Program, Doubles Number of People Providers Can Grow For -- From One to Two

Canadian courts have repeatedly told Health Canada that not allowing medical marijuana providers to grow for more than one patient was unjustifiable, so the agency now says providers can grow for two people. That's not what advocates wanted to hear.

3. Law Enforcement: This Week's Corrupt Cops Stories

Another jail guard goes down, a California cop takes the bait, an NYPD officer gets slapped, a Massachusetts cop gets busted, a Massachusetts trooper cops a plea, and a Houston drug test watcher gets greedy. Just another week in the drug war.

4. Please: Don't Shoot!

The killing of Tarika Wilson, an unarmed mother holding her child, and the maiming of that child, is an inevitable consequences of the overuse of SWAT teams and the growing paramilitarization of the drug war.

5. Law Enforcement: Supreme Court Holds Drug Purchasers Can't Be Charged With "Facilitation" Felonies for Calling Drug Dealers

A federal law that makes it a felony to use a communication device to sell drugs cannot be used against personal use drug buyers, the US Supreme Court ruled this week.

6. Medical Marijuana: Bill Passes Illinois Senate, Heads to House

The Illinois Senate has passed a medical marijuana bill. It now heads to the House, which could act this week, or defer action to the fall.

7. Medical Marijuana: New York Bill Wins Senate Committee Vote

With Republicans in the minority, this might be the year New York passes a medical marijuana law. It's one committee vote closer today, but the clock is ticking.

8. Public Opinion: Rasmussen Poll Finds 41% Favor Legalizing and Taxing Marijuana

A new Rasmussen poll shows support for marijuana legalization at 41% nationwide. That's in line with some recent polls, and suggests that while we're not quite over the hump yet, we're getting there.

9. Europe: Dutch Plan to Reduce Amsterdam Coffee Shop Numbers in Bid to Clean Up City Center

As part of an urban renewal and anti-crime plan for central Amsterdam, authorities there want to cut down the number of cannabis coffee shops in the city's famed Red Light district.

10. Europe: Danish Court Says Christiania Residents Have No Right to It

Pusher Street may be history, but the residents of Copenhagen's Christiania are still fighting for their right to remain. They lost a court battle this week, but the end is not here yet for the countercultural enclave.

11. Latin America: Attacks Made on Candidates from Mexican Party That Favors Drug Legalization

Mexico's Social Democratic Party advocates drug legalization -- and somebody doesn't want to hear it. At least four of the party's candidates have been attacked ahead of July's elections, and the party suspects the drug cartels.

12. Weekly: This Week in History

Events and quotes of note from this week's drug policy events of years past.

13. Students: Intern at StoptheDrugWar.org (DRCNet) and Help Stop the Drug War!

Apply for an internship at DRCNet and you could spend a semester fighting the good fight!

14. Weekly: Blogging @ the Speakeasy

"New Drug Czar Doesn't Care About Medical Marijuana," "If Pure THC Pills are FDA-Approved, What's the Big Deal About Marijuana Potency?," "Research Proves Marijuana is Not a 'Gateway Drug'," "Drunk Reporter Debates Marijuana Legalization In a Bar," "Christian Science Monitor Advocates Teaching Kids to Support the Drug War," "The Worst Argument Against Medical Marijuana," "Cool 'History of Weed' Video from Showtime 'Weeds' Program."

15. Job Opportunity: National Field Coordinator, Americans for Safe Access, Oakland, California

Americans for Safe Access (ASA), the largest national member-based organization of patients, medical professionals, scientists and concerned citizens promoting safe and legal access to cannabis for therapeutic uses and research, is seeking a National Field Coordinator to work from its office in Oakland, CA.
Permission to Reprint: This issue of Drug War Chronicle is licensed under a modified Creative Commons Attribution license. Articles of a purely educational nature in Drug War Chronicle appear courtesy of DRCNet Foundation, unless otherwise noted.

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