Policy and Advocacy: MAPS Policy Team Appears on Al Jazeera, MAPS-Sponsored Researcher Files Lawsuit Challenging DEA’s Marijuana Rescheduling Denials

MAPS Policy and Advocacy Counsel, Ismail Ali, appeared as a panel guest, along with psychedelic psychotherapist Danielle Herrera (Sage Institute) and journalist Michelle Janikian on Al Jazeera’s “The Stream”on July 28, 2020.  The topic was psilocybin, and the panelists used the case study of this substance to touch on broader policy topics like recognition of indigenous practices in Western medicine and culture, practicing personal and legal harm reduction, and some of the key distinctions between decriminalization and legalization. A further policy discussion between Ali and Al Jazeera host Josh Rushing followed on Instagram to cover more topics.

MAPS-sponsored researcher Dr. Sue Sisley of the Scottsdale Research Institute (SRI) filed suit in the United States (U.S.) Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals,asking for a review of the DEA’s scheduling determination that cannabis be listed as a Schedule I drug under the Controlled Substances Act. The petition also asks for a review of similar DEA determinations made in 2016 and 1992. The litigation questions the rationale that the DEA uses to repeatedly deny rescheduling of cannabis and claims that discretionary scheduling decisions by the DEA, which is an executive agency, violates the separation of powers granted by the U.S. Constitution.