Soulful Cannabis endorses the following check-list for Adult Use cannabis legislation. These high level principles can be addressed through numerous legislative paths and language. We offer them as a guide for educating law-makers, activists and policy advocates.
- Affordable and Accessible Permits. The number of permits for cultivation, manufacturing and retail sales should be large or unlimited. The permit fee should be low enough that permits are available to any entrepreneur in the state.
- Home Grow. Residents should be able to grow their own. This is the only way to truly have a program that is intended to benefit the residents of the state first.
- Clear and Helpful Taxing. Taxes should be easy to understand. Tax revenue should be shared with local municipalities and earmarked for the common good of the state.
- Social Equity Support. Include programs that will support disadvantaged communities with access to ownership in the program including business service support, education and discounted fees. Ensure equitable geographic distribution of the businesses.
- Expungement and Prisoner Release. Cannabis-related arrests and convictions should be expunged from the record. People imprisoned for cannabis-related offenses should be freed.
- Safe product requirements. Products need to be safely manufactured through known best practices to eliminate harmful pesticides, solvents and additives. Thorough product testing must be required for all commercial products. Child-proof packaging and marketing practices should be in place.
- Corporate Social Responsibility. Participants in this industry should adhere to transparency in reporting, accountability for customer service, and participation in community support activities. Workers should be paid a living wage with full benefits. The industry should adhere to principles of environmental sustainability.
- Clear Enforcement Protocols. Resources must be in place to ensure compliance with the new laws and regulations.
- Clear Law Enforcement Guidelines. Law enforcement should be given clear guidelines regarding impaired driving and possession violations.
- Public-centered Review and Improvement. Public panels should be empowered to provide periodic feedback on safety, efficacy and program effectiveness. State revenue numbers, disciplinary actions and other program-related data should be published at least annually and readily available to the public.
Do you agree that these principles can help to create a healthy cannabis industry? If so, please share this post with your friends, families and legislators.
On August 25, 2020 Governor Tom Wolf of Pennsylvania called for the state legislature to pass a bill to legalize marijuana for use by adults aged 21 and older. We agree with this call – but warn that it really needs to be done in a way that helps to create a healthy cannabis industry in PA. You only have one chance to start right!