There’s no telling what we’ve missed out on within the realm of psilocybin research since its government-ordered gag at the end of the 1960s. However, with a new piece of legislation in Oregon officially moving into play this year decriminalizing the sale of psilocybin products, there’s no telling what we’ll learn about society and ourselves.
Whether you’re planning a trip to Oregon or a trip in Oregon (if you catch my drift), understanding this bill could be your key to finding more than just portabellas in Portland.
The Oregon Psilocybin Services Act, AKA Oregon Ballot Measure 109, was voted into law in November 2020. The act, per Oregon.GOV, “directs the Oregon Health Authority to license and regulate the manufacturing, transportation, delivery, sale, and purchase of psilocybin products and the provision of psilocybin services.”
Essentially, this means that the state of Oregon decided that its health department and its newest branch of government, Oregon Psilocybin Services, or OPS, had until the end of 2022 to deliberate the ground rules of legally growing, selling, and using psychedelic mushrooms and other psilocybin products.
The two-year development period for the program ended on December 31, 2022, which included creating rules for psilocybin products and services. The Oregon Psilocybin Services Section worked “to build the nation’s first regulatory framework for psilocybin services,” This framework was put into motion on January 2, which invited retailers to apply for licenses to distribute psilocybin products.
There are 12 outlined guidelines the framework will address, per Oregon.GOV:
- Establishing rules by the end of 2022: By December 31, the state of Oregon created a comprehensive list of statutes to regulate licensing and distributing psychedelic mushrooms and their byproducts, including at retail dispensaries to psilocybin therapy and service centers. These statutes and regulations came into effect on January 2, 2023.
- Developing a psilocybin facilitator training program and approval system, license tracking, and compliance case management system: Basically, Oregon had to assume the responsibility for keeping shroomers safe. These programs and rules create a scrutinized view of the psilocybin distributed in Oregon from start to finish, including training for retailers or facilitators of psilocybin and supervision to ensure those with licenses follow the trade rules.
- Securing and customizing a product tracking system: Where are these controlled substances coming from, and are they legal? They better be- Oregonians can rest assured that their magic mushrooms are ethically and legally sourced, distributed, and accounted for with a tracking system that elaborates the psilocybin’s farm-to-table journey.
- GIS mapping for compliance work: Geographic information systems, or GIS, mapping is commonly used for resource tracking and data visualization. In this case, the Oregon government can view licensees and their moved products to monitor general rule-following.
- Online payments for licensees: Because who wants to stand in line? Licensed facilitators and retailers of psilocybin in Oregon can now use the state website to apply and pay for licensure.
- An equity and justice-centered approach to background checks: With over 40,000 Americans incarcerated for non-violent, cannabis-related offenses, there’s no wonder why this legislation called for equitable and fair background checks. Should this legislation become federal law in the future, this inclusion is quintessential in ensuring equitable treatment for those affected by previous drug charges.
- Continuing to hire for licensing and compliance teams: With plentiful statutes and regulations, Oregon is expanding its team to accommodate the broad and thorough view they must assume.
- Setting processes and procedures for each program: The first state to decriminalize the possession of small amounts of personal-use substances must be on point regarding proper rulemaking during the psychedelic preparation process. Each program has solidified rules and regulations to ensure the safety of all involved, from government workers to consumers.
- Supporting the Oregon Psilocybin Advisory Board and subcommittees: Drug policy requires constant monitoring and fluidity to ensure proper supervision and action regarding this new legislation. Oregon local governments will have their subcommittees to oversee the distribution of psilocybin within their jurisdictions.
- Keeping our website updated for access to critical information: Oregon voters, licensed facilities, and of course, the traveling tripper need to know the ins and outs of their psychedelic privilege.
- Building partnerships with diverse communities: Due to the inequitable treatment of non-violent drug offenders, committing to building personal relationships within Oregon’s subcommunities is integral to developing a trusting relationship between the state government and psilocybin consumers. While doable, commitment to walking the walk will make or break the public’s opinion of the government’s efforts.
- Creating education and training for the regulatory community and public: Anybody who has ever dealt with psychedelics knows it isn’t a quick down-the-hatch, walk-in-the-park situation. Just as patients and facilitators go through extensive educational processes regarding the use of psilocybin and psilocybin treatment, the general public and its retailers need to understand this new realm of health care. Those part of the government’s advisory committees and public health division will be trained in proper psilocybin protocol.
After two years of development, Orgeon has finally solidified its rules and regulations for distributing psilocybin products. License applications opened on January 2, 2023, per the Oregon Health Authority fact sheet.
While this piece of legislation has shroomers already planning their next trip to Oregon, it is critical to mention that psilocybin treatments are not the newest fad in holistic medicine.
For millennia, indigenous peoples have utilized psychedelics of all types to practice medicine and explore the human mind. While initially rejected by European colonizers, indigenous peoples eventually became lost in translation regarding the current conversation and usage of psychedelics- even though the first attempts towards destigmatization of hallucinogens began within these tribes thousands of years ago.
While every step in the right direction in modern society is precisely that, understanding the harmful stigma which originated against indigenous peoples and their medicinal practices should be considered quintessential in the contemporary psychedelic effort. Without proper attribution, rich Native history and culture are lost to the hipster attitude of trippin’ balls, man.
Whether you’re packing up to Oregon or thinking about it, understanding this new legislation will make securing some shrooms that much easier.
The OHA is currently accepting applications for those who desire to sell or practice with psilocybin and psilocybin products. For more information, go to the OHA website.