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3 Reasons to Honor International Workers Day with Cannabis

Stacey Wellington

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International Workers Day

This May 1, we will be commemorating the International Worker’s Day. In fact, many countries celebrate Labor Day on this date while some countries celebrate it on other dates such as the United States and Canada (honored on the first Monday of September), as well as Australia (first Monday of March). If you are wondering if you should celebrate this day with marijuana, read on to find out the best reasons why you should.

The Origin of May Day

When talking about Labor Day, it is important to look back on the dire working conditions that laborers suffered back then. During the 19th century, robber barons ordered laborers to turn in 70 hours of grueling work or more. On the 1st of May in 1886, union members have resorted to labor action to show their support of the 8-hour work day. This was part of a series of demonstrations in Chicago and other cities in the US which spanned a few days. This event is now known as the Haymarket Affair. A few years later, May 1 was declared as a global holiday for labor. So, this day is the reason many people across the world now work a 40-hour week and enjoy work-life balance

Why recognize this day with weed?

  • The Cannabis Industry Generated Thousands of Jobs

Marijuana Business Daily reports that the industry was supporting around 160,000 full-time jobs in 2018. This is truly a significant leap when compared with other professions such as kindergarten teachers (with 154,400 jobs) and librarians (with 138,200 jobs). This figure is even almost 300% more than the number of jobs supported by the U.S. coal industry.

If you think that this number is pretty impressive, you will be amazed to know that estimates reveal that the number of jobs supported by the marijuana sector will blow up over the next few years. Even experts anticipate a whopping 340,000 cannabis-related full-time jobs by 2022, possibly showing a growth of around 21% per year.

  • The Cannabis Union Fights for its Members’ Rights

Just like in the Haymarket Affair, unions are acting to fight for their members’ rights. The Canadian branch of the United Food and Commercial Workers Union (UFCW) asserts that while there are standards for quality assurance and regulation of weed, cannabis workers should also have clearly outlined workplace rights and safety standards. After all, how will we have access to the best buds and strains without these people?

To this end, members of UFCW Canada has launched an online training for interested individuals. This aims to expand workers’ knowledge regarding their product, its variety, benefits and side effects. It is also pushing for workplace safety and labor rights even for non-members. If this pushes through, your local budtender can provide you with higher quality products and better assistance.

  • The Cannabis Sector Offers Fulfilling Compensation

Because of legalizations of this plant left and right, the medical marijuana sector has become a billion-dollar industry. However, this industry not only benefits its CEOs who, by the way, have average salaries of $528,090 based on data from the top five cannabis companies. Instead, it also rewards even your favorite budtender with an average salary of $32,240. Dispensary managers can rake in an average of $63,333, while edibles producers can earn an average of $46,640. Security workers and bud trimmers can have an average earning of $34,320 and $29,667, respectively.

With the cannabis industry’s contributions to job generation, unions and compensations, it is definitely worth it to celebrate International Workers’ Day with weed. So, on May 1, make sure to blaze up in recognition of workers worldwide!

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Cannabis News

FTC Warns Three CBD Companies About Unfounded Health Claims

Daniel King

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FTC Warns CBD Companies

The Federal Trade Commission announced Tuesday, September 10, it has sent letters to three CBD companies cautioning them about the use of health claims that have no reliable scientific evidence to promote their products.

The FTC has refused to name the three CBD companies. However, the agency did go into some detail regarding the health claims that each company had made.

“One company’s website claims CBD ‘works like magic’ to relieve ‘even the most agonizing pain’ better than prescription opioid painkillers,” the FTC revealed in a statement. “To bolster its claims that CBD has been ‘clinically proven’ to treat cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, multiple sclerosis (MS), fibromyalgia, cigarette addiction, and colitis, the company states it has participated in ‘thousands of hours of research’ with Harvard researchers.”

Company two, on the other hand, is said to had claimed that CBD can treat autism, anorexia, bipolar disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, schizophrenia, anxiety, depression, Alzheimer’s disease, Lou Gehrig’s Disease (ALS), stroke, Parkinson’s disease, epilepsy, traumatic brain injuries, diabetes, Crohn’s disease, psoriasis, MS, fibromyalgia, cancer, and AIDS. It was also reported that the company promotes CBD as a “miracle pain remedy” for acute and chronic pain, as well as for pain stemming from cancer treatment and arthritis.

Lastly, the third to get the warning letter is said to have advertised CBD gummies as an effective treatment for “the root cause of most major degenerative diseases, including arthritis, heart disease, fibromyalgia, cancer, asthma, and a wide spectrum of autoimmune disorders.”

In addition, the company had also claimed that CBD cream can cure arthritis pain, and CBD oil serves as a good treatment alternative for “depression, PTSD, epilepsy, heart disease, arthritis, fibromyalgia, and asthma.”

According to FTC, the use of unfounded health claims to promote CBD products could result in forced reimbursements to those who had purchased the items and even federal injunction. To date, the agency is giving the company a 15-day allowance to reply and provide details about the steps they have taken to address the concerns presented by the agency.

Earlier this year, the FTC, along with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), had joined forces to send a previous round of letters to three CBD companies concerning their use of unproven health claims to sell their products.

“Before making claims about purported health effects of CBD products, advertisers need sound science to support their statements,” the FTC wrote on its website. “The takeaway tip for anyone in the industry is that established FTC substantiation standards apply when advertisers make health-related representations for CBD products.”

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Cannabis Legalization

Community College in Illinois Now Offering Cannabis Course

Jordan Webber

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Illinois Cannabis Dispensary Course

Aspiring budtenders at Illinois dispensaries can now get training certificates with the new cannabis dispensary course at Oakton Community College.

The course helps students prepare for the laws associated with legal marijuana use, consumption, types and treating terminal illnesses. Unlike blow-off classes, this course does not let students touch any marijuana inside the classroom, instead, make use of visuals so students can differentiate each type.

Aside from drug laws, students enrolled in the cannabis dispensary course will learn more about molecular biology and the technical knowledge of working in a marijuana dispensary.

Just recently, the University of Minnesota also opened its new undergraduate Cannabis course.

This is the first and only community college in Illinois that offers a certificate course in cannabis, which highlights practical knowledge on the subject to help students land a job in the multi-billion dollar industry. After the certificate program, students will be trained at a local cannabis dispensary and patient care specialists to help them prepare to work on both medical and recreational settings.

The course will have 12 credit hours with instruction in the business and dispensary operations.

According to the Oakton Community College Vice President for academic affairs, Ileo Lott, the course offering is backed by the increasing demand of people and industry needs. Most of the dispensaries, not only in Illinois, look for employees with relatively high knowledge about marijuana.

Lott added, “They’re [dispensary owners] looking for people who know how to work with chronically ill patients and understand what they need. They’re not looking for enthusiasts who love to use the product.”

Marijuana Legalization In Illinois

The regulations about the medical cannabis patient program or MCPP is yet to be finalized by the Illinois legislation, in preparation for the legal commercial marijuana sales effective Jan. 1, 2020.

Additional medical conditions for the MCCP includes a minimum age of 21 for purchasing smokable medical cannabis like vaping products and other associated accessories. Registered MCCP patients can also grow up to five cannabis plants for personal consumption.

The new medical conditions that qualify for the MCCP include autism, chronic pain, migraines, anorexia nervosa, Ehlers-Danlos syndrome, Neuropathy, Ulcerative colitis, Polycystic Kidney diseases, Osteoarthritis, Superior canal dehiscence syndrome, irritable bowel syndrome, and Neuro-Bechet’s autoimmune disease.

Medical practitioners such as nurses and caregivers can also apply for the MCCP to assist patients as opposed to only physicians.

Gov. J.B. Pritzker announced last Aug. 12, 2019, the permanent medical marijuana program and qualifying conditions for the MCCP.

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Cannabis Legalization

Petition to Legalize Marijuana Submitted to Mississippi’s Secretary of State

Jordan Webber

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Mississippi Medical Marijuana

Mississippians for Compassionate Care, an organization advocating for medical marijuana legalization, turned in a petition to the secretary of state’s office on Wednesday aiming to register medical marijuana on Mississippi’s 2020 ballot.

According to a report from WLBT, the group has submitted a petition with a total of 105, 686 signatures. This totaled way above the minimum of 86,185 signatures required by state law to qualify Initiative 65, aka Medical Marijuana 2020, to appear on the ballot for next year’s election.

Under the law, a minimum of 86,185 certified signatures, with at least 17,237 certified signatures from each of the state’s five congressional districts, must be submitted to the Secretary of State in order for an initiative to be placed on the ballot. Moreover, all signatures must also be certified by county circuit clerks before submission.

The Mississippians for Compassionate Care had managed to originally collect 214,000 signatures in total. However, only 105,686 were certified by local clerks. Nevertheless, the group had insisted they were able to meet all the given requirements.

“The medical marijuana petition, No. 65, was filed [Wednesday]. At this time, we do not know whether the signature requirement has been fulfilled,” said a spokesperson for the secretary of state. “We are in the process of reviewing and determining the number of signatures so as to file with the Legislature on the first day of the 2020 session in accordance with [state law].”

The legality of Cannabis in Mississippi

Under the current Mississippi law, medical and recreational marijuana use remains to be illegal. However, should the initiative be approved by the Secretary of State, the Medical Marijuana 2020 will appear on the ballot for Mississippians to vote on during the November 2020 election.

Once approved by the voters, doctors from Mississippi will be allowed to prescribe medical marijuana for certain medical conditions. This includes cancer, epilepsy, Parkinson’s disease, chronic pain, multiple sclerosis, post-traumatic stress disorder, HIV, AIDS, glaucoma, Crohn’s disease, and other debilitating diseases.

Although the petition had garnered an impressive number of signatures, many remain to be vocal in opposing the initiative. This includes Gov. Phil Bryant, who had previously shared his opposition on Facebook.

Nevertheless, the Mississippians for Compassionate Care said they remain to be confident that the initiative will be approved by the secretary of state’s office.

“The polling is extremely positive,” said Jamie Grantham, the group’s spokesperson. “It polls above 77 percent, with every age group, religious affiliation, political affiliation, and other groups. Also, to that point, we saw the overwhelming support from the number of signatures we received.”

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