Not a hallucination: Oregon is now one step closer to becoming the first state to legalize psychedelic mushrooms.
Organizers say they have received more than 164,000 signatures on Petition Initiative # 34, which would legalize psilocybin, the active compound in psychedelic mushrooms, for therapeutic use.
This qualifies the measure to go to the ballot in November, although petitioners will have to wait until mid-July to confirm that the measure will appear on this year's ballot, according to the Oregonian.
Psilocybin is found in many species of mushrooms, but following the counterculture movement of the 1960s, they have become better known as "psychedelic" or "magic" mushrooms.
Recent studies have found promising results for the medical and therapeutic use of psilocybin. According to the IP 34 website, "It is exceptionally effective in treating depression, end-of-life anxiety and addiction. A recent NYU study showed that psilocybin therapy reduced depression and anxiety in patients. with cancer with 80 percent of patients, with few side effects. "
Other researchers have noted that psilocybin has helped patients struggling with addiction to other substances such as cigarettes.
If the measure passes in November, Oregon would become the first state to legalize psychedelic mushrooms, which are currently considered Schedule 1 narcotics by the Drug Enforcement Agency.
Denver became the first city to decriminalize mushrooms in May 2019, and was soon followed by Oakland, California, in June 2019 and Santa Cruz, California, in January 2020.
The Oregon initiative was powered by Sheri and Tom Eckert, two counselors who started the Oregon Psilocybin Society in 2017. The Eckerts hope to market a full range of "Psilocybin Services" for patients in the future, according to the Oregonian.
The Eckerts campaign also received a huge boost from a $ 1 million donation of Magic Soaps from Dr. Bronner, a San Diego organic soap company.
The ballot measure imposes restrictions on the use of the drug. It would establish licensing requirements for psilocybin therapy providers and psilocybin farmers. It also restricts use to licensed therapy centers and requires patients to go through a "three-step therapy process" prior to treatment.
People would still not be allowed to grow or consume psychedelic mushrooms in their homes.