Cannabis Conference Atlanta March 15 & 16

Georgia CARE (Campaign for Access, Reform & Education) will participate in the first Southern Cannabis Reform Conference March 15 & 16 at the Spring St. & 4th St. event center hosted by the Peachtree Chapter of The National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (Peachtree NORML).

James Bell, director of Georgia CARE, will speak Friday morning on “Marijuana Law Reform: Moving Georgia Forward”. Bell will reveal his vision for changing marijuana laws in Georgia.

The two day conference is the first of its kind in Atlanta and will attract activists from around the country to discuss cannabis and strategies to change the laws.

Others participants include:

Diane Goldstein: Law Enforcement Against Prohibition – Lieutenant Commander, Redondo Beach (CA) Police Department (Ret.)

Russ Belville: The Independent Voice of the Marijuana Nation on

Robert Platshorn: Author of the Black Tuna Diaries and America’s longest imprisoned (30 years) nonviolent marijuana offender.

Ron Crumpton: Alabama Medical Marijuana Coalition – Medical Marijuana Patient

Rick Day: Georgia NORML – Reform Activist – Spring4th Center Owner

Adrian Bernal: The Caravan for Peace with Justice and Dignity

Ebony Knight: Artist, Activist & Ambassador

Chris Butts: Alabama Medical Marijuana Association

Rebecca Forbes: American Cannabis Coalition

Paul Cornwell: Marijuana Activist since 1978 – Coalition for the Abolition of Marijuana Prohibition (CAMP)

Sabrina Fendrick: Founder and director of NORML Women’s Alliance

Walker Chandler: Esquire: Nationally recognized trail attorney

Sharon Ravert: Peachtree NORML, Executive Director – Moms for Marijuana

Jamie Haase: Greenville, S.C. L.E.A.P.

Candace Junkin: Assistant Director of Moms for Marijuana International

Marijuana Reform Group Sets Legislative Agenda

Atlanta, GA: A group seeking reform of Georgia’s cannabis (marijuana) laws will head to the state capitol on Monday (January 14th) to begin an educational campaign.

James Bell, director of Georgia C.A.R.E., said the marijuana reform coalition wants to start a public discussion on the impact marijuana laws have on the criminal justice system and the public.

Bell said with the Georgia General Assembly studying reform of the criminal justice system and criminal sanctions, marijuana law reform should also be considered.

“You can not talk about reducing the prison population and reforming Georgia’s criminal code without considering reforming marijuana laws”, Bell said. “We want lawmakers to take a close look at the impact these laws have on our state. We have sat on this issue for far too long.”

Each year, nearly 40,000 arrests are made for violations of marijuana laws putting a strain on the criminal justice system, wasting tax dollars and diverting law enforcement resources away from more serious offenses.

The first step in reform is to review the medical marijuana law passed unanimously in 1980 by the general assembly, according to Bell. Eighteen (18) states and the District of Columbia have passed medical marijuana measures with no negative impact on public safety.

Georgia C.A.R.E. Legislative Priorities include:

1. Cannabis (Marijuana) as a Schedule Substance: Designate cannabis (marijuana) as a Schedule V (5) (O.C.G.A. 16-13-29) substance consistent with the “Controlled Substances Therapeutic Research Act”, (O.C.G.A. 43-34-120).

2. Special Study Committee on Therapeutic Medical Marijuana: Establish a special study committee to examine reforming and expanding Georgia’s medical marijuana laws (O.C.G.A. 43-34-120); allow stakeholder to offer testimony on the issue and make recommendations for legislative reform.

3. Special Study Committee on Marijuana Decriminalization: Study the impact of Georgia’s marijuana laws on the criminal justice system and public safety to make recommendations to the Georgia General Assembly concerning law reform.

Attorney Walker Chandler Joins C.A.R.E. Team

Georgia C.A.R.E. welcomes Attorney Walker Chandler to our team. Walker has over 35 years of experience in the practice of law and has been an outspoken advocate for marijuana legalization.

In a 1997 landmark case, Walker Chandler challenged the Georgia statue that required candidates for office to pass a drug test to qualify. The case moved through the courts and was heard by the U.S. Supreme Court.