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Steph Sherer
Steph Sherer is the Executive Director of Americans for Safe Access, the country’s leading medical marijuana advocacy group.

Entries by Steph Sherer

Momentum Builds for the CARERS Act as Patients Prepare to Come to D.C.

(0) Comments | Posted March 15, 2016 | 11:57 AM

Experts & Patients Gather in DC to Inform Congress & United Nations

Conferences promoting medical cannabis have been popping up all over the country, mostly focusing on how to get into the business. This is not surprising, given that forty states now have adopted some...

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New Report Evaluates Medical Marijuana Programs Nation-wide

(0) Comments | Posted January 29, 2016 | 6:10 AM

Patient Advocates Hope Report will Help State Legislators “Make the Grade” in 2016


With the recent release of the Americans for Safe Access (ASA) report “Medical Marijuana Access in the US: A Patient-Focused Analysis of the Patchwork of State Laws,” state lawmakers now have the...

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Congress Extends 'Ceasefire' On Medical Marijuana, but Can They Clear the Smoke?

(21) Comments | Posted December 21, 2015 | 8:39 AM

President Obama extended a federal “cease fire” in the 20-year war on state medical cannabis programs on Friday evening, when he signed theFY 2016 omnibus appropriations bill. The bill contains the Rohrabacher-Farr Amendment which prohibits the Department of Justice from interfering with state medical cannabis laws (Sec. 542, page...

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10 Reasons Why Federal Medical Marijuana Prohibition is about to Go Up in Smoke

(140) Comments | Posted July 23, 2015 | 1:46 PM

When I first opened the D.C. office for Americans for Safe Access (ASA) in 2006, to bring representation of medical marijuana patients to our nation's capitol, I was told by many it was not worth the effort.  A quick skim of the political landscape back then showed we would be...

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Patients Are Relying on Congress to Reauthorize the Rohrabacher-Farr Medical Marijuana Amendment

(7) Comments | Posted June 2, 2015 | 5:17 PM

Today, the U.S. House of Representatives is expected to take part in a “marijuana vote-a-rama” of sorts, with several amendments to dealing with marijuana to be offered on the floor during the FY2016 Commerce, Justice, and Science Appropriations Bill. The amendments offered will cover topics from hemp and...

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Congress Should End Medical Marijuana Gag Order on V.A. Doctors

(3) Comments | Posted April 29, 2015 | 2:30 PM

As soon as this afternoon, the U.S. House of Representatives will be voting on the FY2016 Military Construction and Veterans Affairs Appropriations bill, which sets the budget for the Veterans Administration (V.A.). Representatives Blumenauer (D-OR), Heck (R-NV), Gibbard (D-HI), Reed (R-NY), Lee (D-CA), Rohrabacher (R-CA), and Titus (D-NV) will...

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US Senate Step Promises Peace for Medical Marijuana Patients

(13) Comments | Posted March 11, 2015 | 2:10 PM

Medical marijuana patients just got a step closer to what we need, with the introduction yesterday of a historic medical marijuana bill in the U.S. Senate. The bipartisan bill sponsored by Senators Cory Booker (D-NJ), Rand Paul (R-KY) and Kristen Gillibrand (D-NY) would finally end the federal government’s obstruction...

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The Federal Government Recognizes Battle Over Medical Marijuana

(8) Comments | Posted December 18, 2014 | 4:04 PM

Wednesday marked a milestone in the 18-year battle between state and federal law concerning medical marijuana. But to me, and thousands of other Americans, it marks a day that our country has finally acknowledged that our battle...

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So, Who Is Still Going to Jail for Marijuana?

(17) Comments | Posted November 11, 2014 | 4:40 PM

Have you seen the CNN segment on the Kettle Falls Five, a family of medical marijuana patients being prosecuted by the federal government? If not, you should. They’re scheduled to go to trial in less than three weeks, on December 1st.

The Kettle Falls...

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Medical Marijuana Is on Every Ballot This Election

(25) Comments | Posted October 31, 2014 | 5:07 PM

As the November 4th midterm elections approach, everyone interested in marijuana policy is looking at various voter initiatives across the country: legal adult use of marijuana in Alaska, Oregon, and Washington, D.C., and a robust medical cannabis law in Florida.  But as...

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Leading From the Front: The Legacy of Jim Greig (1951-2014)

(3) Comments | Posted June 17, 2014 | 7:23 PM

1873_570243222994192_1950885254_n.jpgAs the Executive Director of Americans for Safe Access (ASA), I usually reserve this space for medical cannabis policy, but today I am writing as an organizer, a student, and a friend who is mourning.  

On Monday,...

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AG Holder Has Failed to Stop DOJ Interference when it comes to Medical Marijuana; Now, It's Up to Congress

(12) Comments | Posted May 28, 2014 | 2:15 PM

Congress will vote on a budget amendment tomorrow that will prohibit the Department of Justice (DOJ) from spending any funds on arrests, raids, and prosecutions of state authorized medical cannabis patients and their providers. The “Rohrabacher-Farr Amendment” to the Commerce, Justice and Science (CJS) appropriations bill is being introduced...

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Navigating Medical Marijuana in the Mainstream: Advocates Return to D.C. This Weekend

(3) Comments | Posted April 1, 2014 | 8:33 PM

National_Medical_Unity_Cannabis_2014_Conference_Graphic.jpgPlotting a course forward for state and federal policy on medical cannabis is the agenda for patients, parents, medical professionals and other stakeholders gathering in Washington, D.C., this weekend at Americans for Safe Access’ second annual National...

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Why the NFL Should Embrace Medical Marijuana

(5) Comments | Posted December 20, 2013 | 12:52 PM

The consequences of injuries sustained by NFL players have gotten more attention lately, in part due to the tragic death of Junior Seau and others who were found to have chronic traumatic encephalopathy. That’s started a debate about safety and the care players receive. The $765 million settlement the...

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Consensus Among World's Leading Experts: Marijuana Is a Botanical Medicine!

(6) Comments | Posted December 11, 2013 | 4:10 PM


The more than 70 years of ignoring the fact that cannabis is a safe, effective botanical medicine is officially over. The American Herbal Pharmacopeia (AHP) has just sent to press a monograph that returns cannabis...

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Third Time the Charm? New White Paper on Medical Marijuana Shows States in Compliance With DOJ Guidelines

(10) Comments | Posted November 25, 2013 | 12:20 PM

When the Department of Justice (DOJ) released their latest memo to federal prosecutors on how to handle state-regulated marijuana distribution, it marked a second round of change for federal enforcement policy. No longer will the centralized distribution centers established by states to provide safe access for patients automatically...

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When It Comes to Marijuana Policy, Washington State Needs to Put Health Before Happy Hour

(144) Comments | Posted October 25, 2013 | 12:59 PM

I am on my way to Denver today to accept an award from the Drug Policy Alliance, one of Americans for Safe Access' allies in the fight for patient rights. The event will certainly be a celebration for most. The federal government has finally given the...

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Can Senator Leahy Get Real Answers From the DOJ On Medical Marijuana Policy?

(13) Comments | Posted September 10, 2013 | 8:06 AM

Less than two weeks after the Department of Justice (DOJ) issued a memorandum on how it intends to enforce marijuana laws in states that have legalized its use, the Senate Judiciary Committee is scheduled to hold unprecedented hearings this Tuesday at 2:30 p.m. ET focusing in...

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Medical Marijuana Patients Need Protection NOT Policy Rhetoric. Will Congress Step Up?

(20) Comments | Posted September 3, 2013 | 2:22 PM

Last Thursday, Deputy Attorney General James Cole issued a long-awaited memo laying out the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) policy on state marijuana laws. At my office at Americans for Safe Access, we were all experiencing a kind of déjà-vu as the emails started flooding in....

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The Final Impediment for California Medical Marijuana Patients: Police Associations

(14) Comments | Posted August 20, 2013 | 4:22 PM

As Executive Director of Americans for Safe Access, I travel across the country meeting with medical marijuana (cannabis) stakeholders such as patients, providers, medical professionals, regulators, and policy makers to talk about passing laws and regulations that meet the needs of patients. That seems pretty straightforward, but you'd be surprised...

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