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What a 'trip': Will California soon consider legalizing 'shrooms - KSBY.com | San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara Area News

What a 'trip': Will California soon consider legalizing 'shrooms?

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Psilocybin, more commonly known known as magic mushrooms are seen in a grow room at the Procare farm in Hazerswoude, central Netherlands. (AP Photo/Peter Dejong) Psilocybin, more commonly known known as magic mushrooms are seen in a grow room at the Procare farm in Hazerswoude, central Netherlands. (AP Photo/Peter Dejong)

A proposed bill could have California voters decide whether or not to decriminalize the drug psilocybin - an active psychedelic compound also known as hallucinogenic mushrooms.

Kevin P. Saunders, a mayoral candidate for the town of Marina in Monterey County, is among the bill's supporters. He signed an initiative to amend the California Statute requesting to "exempt adults, 21 years of age and over, from criminal penalties and decriminalizes adult use of Psilocybin" and the California Health and Safety Codes 11390 and 11391, which prohibit possession, sale, transport and cultivation of Psilocybin.

Saunders told the Los Angeles Times that psilocybin helped him get over an addiction to heroin a decade ago. 

There were studies done in 2016 by the Journal of Psychopharmacology claiming that psilocybin helps with depression and anxiety in cancer patients, however, it is currently in the same category as heroin, as a Schedule I drug by the California Controlled Substances Act and the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency. One study found the drug to help heavy tobacco users stop smoking. 

The Global Drug Survey, an independent research company based in London, released results from the 2017 Global Drug Survey in May revealing psilocybin is responsible for fewer emergency medical treatments than any other drug in the world; in other words, making it the "safest" drug. Researchers note there are still risks that come with the drug, but more education is needed to understand the drug's full potential. 

The survey size was roughly 150,000 people; the report took data from 120,000 of them from around the world. More than 10,000 of the people surveyed live in the U.S.

The initiative was filed by Saunders on Aug. 22.

The measure must be submitted for public comment for 30 days and then given a summary by the attorney general's office before it's approved for signatures. If it is approved, it would need 365,880 valid voter signatures to be put on the November 2018 ballot. 
 

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