Denver votes to become first U.S. city to decriminalize ‘magic mushrooms’

Psilocybin or “magic mushrooms” are seen in an undated photo provided by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) in Washington, U.S. May 7, 2019. DEA/Handout via REUTERS

(Reuters) – Denver will become the first city in the United States to decriminalize magic mushrooms, based on final unofficial results on Wednesday of a ballot initiative about the hallucinogenic drug.

The initiative called for Colorado’s capital to end the imposition of criminal penalties for individuals at least 21 years of age for using or possessing psilocybin, widely known as magic mushrooms.

The Denver Elections Divisions will certify results on May 16, but the final count on its website on Wednesday was 50.56 percent of voters in favor and 49.44 percent against.

If the initiative is approved, psilocybin would still remain illegal under both Colorado and federal law. The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration classifies the drug as a Schedule 1 substance, meaning the agency has deemed that it has a high potential for abuse with no accepted medical application.

Decriminalize Denver, the group behind Tuesday’s ballot question, said psilocybin had a wide range of medical benefits. It has been shown to reduce depression and anxiety and to help in treating tobacco, alcohol and opioid addictions, and with alleviating symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), according to the organization.

Some opponents worry that if passed, the initiative would increase the city’s image as a haven for drugs, given that Colorado was one of the first states to legalize possession and sale of marijuana for adult recreational use.

Denver District Attorney Beth McCann opposed the initiative. But if the measure were approved, she supported formation of a review panel under the initiative to study the effects of the drug and the impact the ordinance would have on Denver, spokeswoman Carolyn Tyler said.

Denver residents first voted to decriminalize marijuana possession in 2004, years before Colorado voters ultimately approved its legalization statewide for recreational purposes, establishing a full regulatory framework to license retail outlets and collect sales taxes on cannabis products.

Reporting by Andrew Hay in New Mexico; Editing by Peter Cooney

Source

more recommended stories

  • Biohaven’s treatment for Lou Gehrig’s disease fails to win FDA nod

    FILE PHOTO: The logo for Biohaven.

  • WHO says investigators conclude Ebola victim did not enter Rwanda

    GENEVA (Reuters) – A Congolese woman.

  • Second opioid distributor charged over U.S. overdose crisis

    (Reuters) – An Ohio drug wholesale.

  • U.S. overdose deaths post annual drop for first time in two decades

    (Reuters) – U.S. overdose deaths dropped.

  • FDA finds ‘significant violations’ at India’s Strides plant

    (Reuters) – The U.S. Food and.

  • U.N. wants more urgency in AIDS fight as gains and funding fade

    LONDON (Reuters) – The global fight.

  • Oklahoma seeks to hold J&J responsible for opioid crisis as trial ends

    NORMAN, Okla. (Reuters) – Lawyers for.

  • Healthy living may help offset genetic risk of dementia: study

    LONDON (Reuters) – Living healthily with.

  • Democrats take aim as Trump abandons drug pricing plan

    WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Democrats see U.S..

  • U.S. appeals court blocks Trump administration birth control exemptions

    (Reuters) – A federal appeals court.

  • China vows to tackle dead pig scam amid swine fever epidemic

    FILE PHOTO: Piglets are seen by.

  • Alberta joins Ontario in pulling some CannTrust weed products

    TORONTO (Reuters) – Alberta is placing.

  • Trump administration pushes U.S. at-home kidney care, transplant availability

    NEW YORK/WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Trump.

  • U.S. appeals court signals sympathy to bid to strike down Obamacare

    NEW ORLEANS (Reuters) – A federal.

  • U.S. judge strikes down Trump administration rule requiring drug prices in TV ads

    (Reuters) – A federal judge on.

  • Intra-Cellular drug fails one of two bipolar depression studies; shares fall

    (Reuters) – Intra-Cellular Therapies Inc said.

  • China reports new African swine fever outbreak in Guangxi region

    BEIJING (Reuters) – China’s southwestern region.

  • Weed ban means no Rocky Mountain high for Canada’s Calgary Stampede

    CALGARY, Alberta (Reuters) – Canada’s Calgary.

  • Weightlifting better at reducing heart fat than aerobic exercise

    Obese people who engaged in resistance.

  • Sydney’s city council reviews use of Bayer’s Roundup weed killer amid cancer fears

    SYDNEY (Reuters) – Sydney’s city council.

  • Bulgaria confirms two cases of African swine fever

    SOFIA (Reuters) – Bulgaria has confirmed.

  • FDA approves Karyopharm Therapeutics’ blood cancer drug

    (Reuters) – The U.S. Food and.

  • Facebook to tackle content with misleading health claims

    FILE PHOTO: The Facebook logo is.

  • FDA ties three deaths to Edwards Lifesciences’ recalled heart devices

    (Reuters) – The U.S. Food and.

  • India asks its states not to partner with Philip Morris-funded foundation

    NEW DELHI (Reuters) – India’s health.

  • U.S. federal court delays adoption of healthcare rule on abortion

    FILE PHOTO – A imaging table.

  • China tightens vaccine management after scandals

    FILE PHOTO – A nurse prepares.

  • U.S wages lost to unpaid family care to hit $147 billion by 2050

    As the U.S. population ages, the.

  • U.S. ‘gag rule’ linked to 40% jump in abortions in parts of Africa

    LONDON (Reuters) – A decades-old U.S..

  • Study shows major real-world impact of cervical cancer vaccines

    LONDON, June 26 (Reuters) – Vaccination.

  • Glyphosate use will eventually end, Merkel says

    German Chancellor Angela Merkel attends a.

  • Unproven stem cell therapies often peddled by doctors without training

    At U.S. clinics advertising unproven stem.