Thursday, October 18, 2012

A Voice In Congress For Medical Cannabis Patients

From Our Sister PAC - Patients For Compassionate Use Policies

Greetings Friends and Colleagues -

We are just days away from the November Election and while neither of the
presidential candidates support medical cannabis, we should focus on
allies in Congress.

I am pleased to forward you below a statement from Congressional Candidate
David Hernandez who is running in the 29th California congressional
district - which covers areas in mid and north Valley.

I know David personally.  I'm honored to call him a friend and fellow
community activist.  David will always have his door open to us on this
issue and understands it on a local and federal level.

Make no mistake, David is an underdog in this race and needs your support.
 He is up against a machine candidate - LA City Councilmember Tony
Cardenas.  We need Tony to go home NOT to DC.

What you can do:

#1. Make sure you VOTE on November 6, 2012! And if you're in the 29th
congressional district please vote for David Hernandez.

#2. Please make a DONATION to David's campaign.  David is not seeking to
meet the 100's of thousands of $$ that Cardenas has raised.  David can get
his message out via mail, radio and tv with a few thousand dollars.  A
donation of a few dollars will go a long way.  So, please don't be shy to
donate whatever you can no matter how much or how little.

#3. Get involved with SOCIAL MEDIA.  Below is the link to David's campaign
and you can keep up with him and his events on facebook.  Please help
share David's message with others, especially those in the San Fernando

#4.  VOLUNTEER.  I'll be at the campaign office helping David this
Saturday, October 20, 2012.  GET INVOLVED and hopefully, I'll see you

WHO makes it happen?  WE make it happen!

Degé Coutee
Patients For Compassionate Use Policies #1332436


David Hernandez for Congress

Patient Based Medical Marijuana, Position Statement and Action Plan.

The duty of an individual who wishes to represent the residents of their
district is clear. This is especially true once the voters have expressed
their position on an issue via the ballot box.

The voters of California voted to approve the use of Medical Marijuana.
This is a clear and is undeniable. Its value to those suffering from
horrendous medical challenges is undisputable.

Moving forward we must begin with these two realities. The need exists and
the voters recognizing that need voted to make Medical Marijuana

We will not and cannot dismiss the arguments presented by those in
opposition. While some are based in the sincere belief that this should
not be available under any circumstances, the majority of the opposition
is not.

For the majority, the opposition comes from the negative impact on the
quality of life in their communities and the abuses of the current system
now in place.

I will not enter into a debate over the abuses and will simply acknowledge
them and state they can and will be addressed via the proper methods of

It is my objective to maintain a patient centered position. While many
point to the opportunity to generate tax revenue as an argument in favor
of the issue, I will remain focused on the patient.

While there are competent individuals drafting sound and effective local
guidelines and ordinances, my efforts, while supportive of Local
Regulations to establish a patient focused fair and competent access
policy, will be at the Federal Level.

At present, the Federal Policy of Classifying Marijuana as a Schedule 1
drug is unjust and must be resolved to reflect a sound and fact based view
of the substance.

As a congressman I will be spearheading the effort to bring about a sound
patient based approach in amending the current classification of the
medical marijuana. This will eliminate much of the ambiguities which
create such unfair challenges to local distribution and delivery.

It is my opinion and that of many others that Marijuana for Medical use
should be removed from the current drug schedule.  It should be placed in
a category of its own and be governed much the same way a Beer or Wine.

Having achieved this, we will have established a sound, safe Patient Based
approach to the Medical Marijuana issue.

David Hernandez
Candidate for Congress District 29


Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Los Angeles City Councilmember Bill Rosendahl Ends Ban On Medical Cannabis Collectives, Presented Awards By Patient Advocates

10/8/12 – LOS ANGELES -  It’s been a bittersweet week for the Los Angeles medical cannabis community.  On the heels of Los Angeles City Councilmember Bill Rosendahl getting the City Council to repeal its ban on medical cannabis collectives, Rosendahl announced he will not seek re-election to focus on his own battle with cancer. 

“As most of you have heard, a few months back I received the difficult news that I have cancer.  It was a shock but, like every challenge I have faced during my lifetime, I decided to meet it head on,” Rosendahl said in a recent written statement announcing his intentions. 

On July 24, 2012, the Los Angeles City Council voted to replace its existing medical marijuana ordinance with a ‘gentle ban’ on any association of 3 patients or more.  The LA City Council took this vote while Councilmember Rosendahl was out on medical leave for chemotherapy treatments.  

However, on October 2, 2012, Rosendahl implored his colleagues to repeal the dispensary ban.  "This word, 'gentle ban,' is a bad word. It's not gentle. It stops me from being able to get my medicinal use," Rosendahl told his colleagues.  A Vietnam Veteran and openly gay politician, Rosendahl was open about using medical cannabis for neuropathy and to cope with chemotherapy.  “If I can’t get marijuana, and this is medically prescribed, what do I do?  What do all the people who have health issues, who have been relying on this do?”

Patient advocates argued that there was nothing gentle about the City’s ban.  The City Council argued that the ‘City is being sued at every turn’ over the original set of rules it put in place in January 2010.  Several dozen patient collectives sued the City and won a temporary restraining order preventing the City from enforcing what were called ‘unconstitutional provisions.’  Rosendahl’s move forces LA’s legislature to return to the table and create a workable set of guidelines. 

Degé Coutee, president of Patient Advocacy Network, a charitable education and advocacy organization fighting for patients’ rights, and one the original members of the LA’s Medical Marijuana Working Group has been advocating for sensible dispensary regulations for Los Angeles for nearly 8 years.  This past weekend Coutee and her organization honored Councilmember Rosendahl with 2 awards during an all-day event, Kushday LA – Celebrating Cannabis With Music & Education, featuring numerous speakers and entertainers.

“If it were not for your heroic efforts, we would still have a dispensary ban in Los Angeles. On behalf of all patients, thank you,” Coutee said to Rosendahl in front the Kushday audience.  Presenting him with the organization’s Spirit & Compassion Award, Coutee read, “For your endless courage and strength, for your boundless compassion and care for others, for your dedication to public service, for breaking stigma and bravely speaking out on civil rights and social justice issues including medical cannabis legalization, we are honored to present you with this award.”

Patient Advocacy Network board member Shona Gochenaur, also the executive director of Axis of Love SF Community Center in San Fransisco, a social service center for low-income, disabled medical cannabis patients presented Rosendahl with a certificate from the Harvey Milk LGBT Democratic Club.  Gochenaur read, “We wanted to reach out to personally thank you for taking a stand and helping to promote safe access to patients. By using your voice and personal story you have helped to challenge unproductive bans... Thank you for leading with a true voice and a brave heart,” the certificate ends.

Rosendahl states he is ‘passing the baton’ and has encouraged his deputy chief of staff, Mike Bonin, to run in the City election in March 2013.  However, Rosendahl states he will not completely leave public service, “Please know that I don’t plan to fade away.  On the contrary, once I have beaten this cancer I plan to return to public affairs broadcasting on television or radio.  I want to create a space for honest and open dialogue on the important issues facing our city, our state, and our country; a space where people can finish their sentences, share their thoughts, and contribute in a positive way to the public discourse.”

Councilman Bill Rosendahl greatest LA City Council Speech

Passing the Baton

Los Angeles City Council Repeals Its Ban On Medical Marijuana Shops
City Councilman Bill Rosendahl, who is a current cancer patient, implored his colleagues to repeal the ban

LA repeals ban on storefront medical marijuana dispensaries

Patient Advocacy Network

Thursday, October 04, 2012

Kushday Cannabis Symposium

Kushday Cannabis Symposium

Sunday, October 7, 2012  -  12:00 – 4:20 p.m.
Free & open to the public, 18+

4315 Melrose Ave. Los Angeles, CA 90029 – Ukranian Culture Center

Cannabis Symposium Schedule*                             * Subject to change

12 p.m. – Welcoming  & Introductions
Big Kush Jay – Klub Kush Media -
Degé Coutee – Patient Advocacy Network –

12:05 – 12:50 - Brief Intro To Cannabis Botany & Chemistry & Cannabis Cultivation panel
Bret Bogue – ‘King of Kush” -
Alec Dixon – SC Laboratories -

12:50 – 1:20 p.m. – The Basics of Cannabis Cuisine & other fun stuff with Cheri Sicard – Author, Activist, Gourmet Cook  -

1:20 – 2:05 p.m. – Canna-business Discussion panel
Robert F. Calkin – Author, Consultant -
Alexandra Sussin - Hemp Entrepreneur -
Tiffany Wright – Member Services Director -

2:05 – 2:15 – Short Break

2:15 – 3:00 p.m. - Cannabis, Collectives & The Law  - Legal Panel Discussion & Q&A with Attorneys:
Graham Berry -
Bruce Margolin -
Stewart Richlin -

3:00 – 4:20 p.m. – The War On Drugs Is A War On… - Social Justice Panel
Patrick Duff – Federal Defendant, Medical & Religious Use Advocate -
Shona Gochenaur – Executive Director, Axis of Love SF -
Diane Goldstein – Retired Police Officer, LEAP Representative -
‘Freeway’ Ricky Ross -,

End Symposium - 4:20 Celebration

Vendor booths, refreshments all day

Post symposium event program

4:30 – 6:00 p.m.:  Spirit Award Presentation To LA City Councilmember Bill Rosendahl; Guest Speaker David Hernandez, Candidate for Congress; Stand-up Comedy with Jay London.

6:00 - 10:00 p.m. – Live music with Yukmouth and many others…
Brought to you by DJ Big Kush Jay & Klub Kush Media

There is free and open street-parking available and a free parking (on Sunday) in the LA City College garage on Heliotrope.

Kushday  - Celebrating Cannabis with Music & Education - is a benefit for Patient Advocacy Network.