Mushrooms Growing in Nature

California Will Not Legalize Widespread Access to Psychedelic Therapy Any Time Soon

SB1012, the bill to legalize and mainstream psychedelic therapy in California, was axed among hundreds of other initiatives in May.

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DoubleBlind // Equity and Reciprocity // News

Psychedelic therapy will remain underground—and technically illegal—for the foreseeable future in California.

Senate Bill 1012, introduced by Senator Scott Wiener, aimed to mainstream psychedelics by legalizing their use in therapy across California. However, the bill hit a roadblock in mid-May when the Senate Appropriations Committee decided to cut down on hundreds of proposed bills, the LA Times reports.

“We’ve been working for four years to legalize access to psychedelics in California, to bring these substances out of the shadows and into the sunlight, and to improve safety and education around their use,” Wiener said in a statement.

“We’re in a terrible budget year, where all bills with significant costs are at risk. Nevertheless, it’s disappointing for this bill not to move forward.”

READ: Are Ketamine Clinics Paving the Way for Legal Psychedelic Therapy?

Wiener says he promises to keep pushing forward for psychedelic therapy, highlighting the massive healing potential of these substances in therapeutic settings. He said he believes they can help people heal from trauma and reclaim their lives. Among the supporters of SB1012 were veterans groups, who see the promise in this new form of therapy.

The exact cost of the bill is unclear, but estimates suggest it is in the low millions. The legislation proposed establishing three new government bodies to oversee psychedelic-assisted therapy and to set the criteria for licensing facilitators of these sessions.

The California State Sheriffs’ Association was among several opponents voicing concerns about the government “condoning and facilitating the use of mind-altering drugs.”

Some medical professionals raised doubts about the scientific basis for using psychedelics in the context of therapy. The California State Association of Psychiatrists argued in a bill analysis that “the evidence supporting the therapeutic use of psychedelics isn’t robust enough to justify widespread access.”

READ: How to Become a Psychedelic Therapist

The Senate Business and Professions Committee’s analysis also questioned the bill’s proposal to create a new category of licensed professionals for facilitating psychedelic treatment. They suggested instead that those seeking mental health care should be able to obtain psychedelics from their current providers.

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Their analysis also noted that the legislation didn’t grant local control to cities that might want to prohibit psychedelic treatment businesses.

Last year, Wiener attempted to decriminalize the possession and personal use of “magic mushrooms” and other psychedelics. Although Governor Gavin Newsom vetoed the bill he encouraged lawmakers to make another attempt and suggested that the state establish “regulated treatment guidelines” and a framework for dosing for psychedelics.

Jared Moffat, campaign director of the Alliance for Safer Use of Psychedelics, which sponsored the bill, stated that California missed an opportunity to establish “a model policy for the rest of the country.”

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DoubleBlind is a trusted resource for news, evidence-based education, and reporting on psychedelics. We work with leading medical professionals, scientific researchers, journalists, mycologists, indigenous stewards, and cultural pioneers. Read about our editorial policy and fact-checking process here.

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DoubleBlind Magazine does not encourage or condone any illegal activities, including but not limited to the use of illegal substances. We do not provide mental health, clinical, or medical services. We are not a substitute for medical, psychological, or psychiatric diagnosis, treatment, or advice. If you are in a crisis or if you or any other person may be in danger or experiencing a mental health emergency, immediately call 911 or your local emergency resources. If you are considering suicide, please call 988 to connect with the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.

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