Psychedelics Task Force Bills Signed by Maryland Governor

in Culture

On May 17, Maryland Gov. Wes Moore signed two bills that will create a psychedelic task force, called the “Task Force on Responsible Use of Natural Psychedelic Substances,” which was established by the passage of House Bill 548 and Senate Bill 1009.

Effective starting on July 1, 2024, the two bills green light recruitment for the task force, which will consist of 17 members. Together they will research a variety of considerations for “natural psychedelic substances,” including psilocybin, psilocin, dimethyltryptamine (DMT), and mescaline (but not peyote).

The task force’s mission is to recommend law and policy changes in order to build a program that “enables broad, equitable, and affordable access to psychedelic substances.” Task force members will also assess the best research available to better understand public benefits and uses of “natural psychedelic substances,” as well as review potential risks, and examine the best courses of action to increase accessibility. 

Additionally, the task force is also required to study various barriers for healthcare practitioners and facilitators, such as insurance, licensing restrictions, zoning, advertising, as well as financial services.

Members of the task force will also need to review how to approach civil penalty punishments for “the planting, cultivating, purchasing, transporting, distributing, or possessing of or other engagement with natural psychedelic substances.” The bills also address the requirement of expunging Maryland residents who were convicted of nonviolent psychedelic-related crimes, as well as releasing those serving time in prison for such crimes.

The 17-member task force will include the following: a Senator representative, a House representative, the Secretary of Health (or Secretary’s designee), the Secretary of Disabilities (or a designee), the Secretary of Veterans Affairs (or a designee), the Director of the Maryland Cannabis Association (or a designee), a representative from either the University System of Maryland, Johns Hopkins University’s Center for Psychedelic and Consciousness …

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Author: Nicole Potter / High Times

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