California moves forward with expanded drug legalization

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The Golden State isn’t stopping at cannabis legalization as it explores new legislation

California wants to continue to be recognized as one of the most liberal states when it comes to drug use. Now, it has been announced that a new bill to decriminalize psychedelics in the state could be just around the corner after being advanced through a Senate committee two days ago. The idea is also to form a working group that would be able to study a broader reform. Legislation aimed at allowing communities to open safe places to consume illegal drugs was also approved in the same session.

Senator Scott Wiener is behind this legislation and, if all goes as planned, the penalties for possessing or sharing a wide range of psychedelics would be completely eliminated. These psychedelics include psilocybin mushrooms, DMT, ibogaine, LSD and MDMA, and would be allowed only for adults over 21. According to the text of the bill, it requires the state Department of Public Health to be able to establish a task force “to study and make recommendations on possible regulatory systems that California could adopt to promote safe and equitable access to certain substances in legally permitted contexts.”

This bill was initially introduced in February of this year and since then has undergone several revisions in order to determine the best benefit for all parties involved. Even though many advocates and legislators see this bill as a simple “decriminalization,” it must be clear that under the official legislative framework, it would “legalize” the personal possession and social exchange of these substances. Several approvals are needed for this legislation to become a reality, but Wiener says he is very positive and believes there will be no hiccups along the way.