Stop the Ban SD â€“ The effort to save Medical Cannabis in San Diego
It is no secret that some in the government of the City of San Diego have been working ceaselessly to oppress medical cannabis providers and make life more challenging for medical cannabis patients. The Medical Marijuana Task Forceâ€™s recommendations were ignored; the planning commission sided with a vocal minority of prohibitionists. This month, the city council is preparing to vote on an ordinance that would close down every medical cannabis facility in the city and serve as a de facto ban on any reopening in the future.
In response to this impending ban, a coalition of community groups, non-profits, businesses, and concerned citizens have launched a grassroots campaign called â€œStop the Banâ€, which isÂ aimed at persuading the city council to amend the proposed, overly restrictive ordinance. The coalition, led by the San Diego chapter of Americans for Safe Access and Canvass for a Cause, has been educating the public about the impending ban for over a month now, and with your help, we can accomplish something unprecedented in the history of San Diego!
We know that the people of San Diego support safe access, which doesnâ€™t include all current dispensaries being shut down with only one or two emerging after a year-long compliance process. The vast majority of San Diegans believe the proposed ordinance is a de-facto ban. Not only did Prop. 215 pass in San Diego County by a 52% majority, but collectives currently open in the city are revitalizing neighborhoods by helping lower the crime rates around them. In the last two years, the city has seen a significant reduction in crime, and the current crime rates are the lowest we have seen since the 60s.
Collectives currently in operation are helping aids, cancer, M.S., P.T.S.D., and other seriously ill patients maintain a normal quality of life in the city; and if they are shut down, it would force thousands of patients back to the black market as well as deprive those in need of medicine from safe and reasonable access. The city council is out of touch with the cityâ€™s residents and the â€œStop the Banâ€ campaign is going to serve as that bridge to bring the voice of the people back into city hall on this issue.
If youâ€™re reading this, we need you to help.Â We have organized a letter writing campaign to the city council from people who live in the City of San Diego, the likes of which our city council has never seen before. Our goal is 10,000 letters from voting constituents in the City of San Diego to their councilmember, urging them to amend the current ordinance. We cannot do it alone!
We canâ€™t guarantee that weâ€™ll succeed in getting the ordinance changed â€“ the city council can vote however it sees fit â€“ but what we can guarantee is this: If this ordinance is approved, it will be over the most unprecedented outpouring of public opposition to an ordinance in the history of the City of San Diego. But, again, we canâ€™t do it alone.
Visit us at www.stopthebansd.org, write a letter to your city council person, talk to your collective about the campaign, tell your friends and family what is happening in the city, volunteer with us, or donate to the campaign.
This ordinance is the end of the line, and if we lose this fight, lawsuits, initiatives and more delays are imminent. We have nothing left to lose in this battle with the city.Â Our united voices can sway the city council â€“ city council elections are decided by narrow victories and our opposition is small â€“ but if we remain silent on this ordinance, we lose medical cannabis in San Diego.
As of this writing, our coalition partners and the organizations who have both endorsed as well as thrown their support behind this campaign include: Canvass for a Cause, Americans for Safe Access, A New PATH, The San Diego Renterâ€™s Union, The San Diego County Community Coalition, Drug Policy Alliance (DPA), Ideal Choice Insurance, Law Offices of Melissa Bobrow, Law Offices of Kimberly Simms, Nug Magazine, Kush Magazine, The San Diego County Community Coalition, Green Freedom Law Group, Legal Cannabis Institute, Several Members of the San Diego Medical Marijuana Task Force, among others.
We need you to join our ranks while there is still time!
Stay tuned to the StopTheBanSD.org website for the date of the city council meeting, and be prepared to join us for a march on City Hall as well as a rally in front of City Hall on the day of the vote.
For more information contact Eugene Davidovich at the San Diego Chapter of Americans for Safe Access at (619) 621-8446 or Rachel Scoma at Canvass for a Cause at (619) 663-6804.