Cannabis Literacy | BackTalk

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Many states are legalizing the possession, use, and sale of cannabis for medical and/or leisure functions, even because it stays unlawful on the federal degree. According to the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML), legalization has been adopted in Alaska, California, Colorado, Maine, Massachusetts, Nevada, Oregon, Washington State, and Washington, DC.

Whether or not your library is situated in a type of states, the frequent presence of the substance within the information could also be elevating questions in your patrons, akin to, is it a very good various to opioids? Will it injury my physique? Do I've to smoke it? In states the place it isn't but authorized, medical or leisure cannabis payments could also be on the poll. Our job is to assist individuals discover legitimate info—even when subjects are controversial.

Normally, discovering details about merchandise, medicinal or in any other case, is simple. However, cannabis has an extended historical past of misinformation campaigns and governmental persecution that may muddy the waters. To assist meet patrons’ cannabis info wants, librarians ought to turn into acquainted with the sources of their locales and areas.

Legal info

  • Ordinances: There are sometimes native bulletins and conferences about ordinances regulating the sale and use of cannabis. The library can keep a binder, net web page, or different useful resource.
  • Governmental division web sites: Some businesses have already packaged info. The Sacramento Cannabis Web Resource is a superb instance: www.cityofsacramento.org/marijuana.

Medical info

There has been a veritable windfall of knowledge revealed on this matter in the previous few years, for instance:

  • Dussault, Dee. Ganja Yoga: A Practical Guide to Conscious Relaxation, Soothing Pain Relief, and Enlightened Self-Discovery. (2017)
  • Leinow, Leonard & Juliana Birnbaum. CBD: A Patient’s Guide to Health with Medicinal Cannabis. (2017)
  • Oregon Health Authority. OMMP Plant Limits. (2017)

Reliable on-line assets embrace:

Many insurance coverage suppliers gained’t cowl, and a few docs refuse to problem, cannabis prescriptions. Therefore, patrons may have to look a useful resource resembling Leafly’s medical marijuana doctor locator. (Leafly additionally options one of the in depth cannabis pressure lists on the planet.)

You may even seek for info in your space on medical cannabis docs by way of Yelp. Several providers cost customers or require one to turn into a member; don’t purchase into these. An area Facebook group can be a superb useful resource in your space, such because the Oregon Medical Marijuana Program Facebook group.

A rising enterprise

Business assets are one other space librarians might not have thought-about. Cannabis-related companies promote insurance coverage, rising provides, seeds, clones, edibles, flowers, concentrates, and related gear. Forbes reported over $6.7 billion in gross sales for 2016. Your library can put together to serve these info wants through the use of the next:

Libraries reply

Libraries are rising to the problem of offering dependable info. In October 2017, American Libraries cited Colorado’s Anythink, which not solely circulates related books and films however hosted a Careers in Cannabis talking panel and librarian schooling nights, the place librarians Jennifer Hendzlik and Aaron Bock “team with other Public Library Association (PLA) chapters to open a dialog about marijuana and literature.” Hendzlik and Bock additionally introduced on the topic on the 2016 PLA convention in Denver. In a session titled “Puff, Puff, Lend: Cannabis Culture and the Library Collection,” they mentioned choosing supplies about rising, cultivating, and cooking marijuana, in addition to enterprise, use, science, regulation, and activism—plus “Book and Bud” pairings.

In January, the Oakland Public Library revealed a weblog submit titled “OPL Responds: The Legalization of Marijuana Use” that particulars the fundamentals on the brand new regulation for California residents. Also, the Denver Public Library will maintain a ebook occasion on the historical past of cannabis within the West in March.

With the arrival of cannabis as huge enterprise, leisure legalization in a number of states, and the nationwide opioid disaster, we will anticipate our patrons’ info wants to extend on this space. No matter the place we stay, librarians ought to put together for requests and grow to be acquainted with dependable sources.


Max Macias, an unbiased librarian, teaches info literacy part-time for Portland Community College, OR. His pursuits embrace info and hip-hop, whiteness in schooling, racism within the United States, colonialism, cannabis assets for librarians, and schooling

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