Detroit decriminalizes psychedelics for therapeutic purposes

As of last Tuesday, Detroit became the most recent U.S. city to legalize psychoactive drugs following the successful public vote of ‘Proposal E’. Voters approved the proposition with a majority of  61%, declaring the “personal possession and therapeutic use” of natural psychoactives by adults to be legal.

The majority of local legalization measures have been implemented via city council ballots. However, activists in Detroit had more of a voice in their city’s future by voting publicly for the legalization of natural therapeutics.

The phrasing of the proposal presented to the state authorities inquired as to whether or not “voters of the City of Detroit [will] adopt an ordinance to the 2019 Detroit City Code that would decriminalize to the fullest extent permitted under Michigan law the personal possession and therapeutic use of Entheogenic Plants by persons 21 years of age and older, make the personal possession and therapeutic use of Entheogenic Plants by persons 21 years of age and older the city’s lowest law-enforcement priority and establish an entheogen policy review panel to assess and report on the effects of the ordinance.”

Decriminalize Nature Detroit was the driving force behind Proposal E. Many of the legalization efforts now underway at the federal and local levels in Northern parts of the U.S. are being led by public advocacy organizations such as this. Moudou Baqui, the coordinator of Decriminalize Nature Detroit, expanded on the importance of the vote. “It would allow personal possession and cultivation of sacred plant medicines, including psilocybin, iboga, and ayahuasca,” said Baqui.

Baqui described the event in a recent interview. “We had an amazing turnout, and that’s what really helped my enthusiasm as we attempted to engage voters. They were already informed about [these] subjects. Many of them were already passionate about voting yes for it, and even those people that have concerns realized that they had misinformation or lack of information,” said Baqui. “It was beautiful just seeing the people vote for another model. It’s always great to see leadership’s adoption, but to hear the voice of people gives you so much confidence.”

Michigan has been the location of numerous significant breakthroughs in the continuing campaign to legalize natural psychoactives derived from plants and fungal sources. One of the first American cities to enact a referendum decriminalizing the possession of psychedelic substances was Ann Arbor. Washtenaw County’s prosecuting attorney agreed to drop charges connected to the therapeutic use of psychoactive substances as a result.

An event called EntheoFest was held in Ann Arbor to commemorate the milestone which took place about a year ago. EntheoFest is devoted to promoting understanding of the therapeutic benefits of psychedelics.

Furthermore, a Senate proposal has been presented in the Michigan Legislature, which would legalize the consumption of psychoactive drugs for the entire state of Michigan.

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