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New Jersey Activists Will Highlight Home Cultivation on Earth Day 

The New Jersey cannabis community will gather in Trenton on April 22nd to celebrate Earth Day and protest through personal cannabis home cultivation.

That’s after the traditional weed holiday of 4/20 and the 2nd anniversary of the New Jersey adult-use cannabis market opening.

Home cultivation in the Garden State remains a felony.

Several bills to allow adults and medical patients some access to home cultivation have been waiting years for hearings in the Senate and Assembly. Recently, nearly 1,000 emails have been sent to legislators urging action to legalize home cultivation. Legislative leaders have introduced the bills S1393/A 846, which would allow registered medical patients to grow.

“Three years after New Jersey legalized cannabis, a registered cannabis medical patient could end up in prison for five years just for growing one plant,” said Trichome Analytical owner and advocacy leader Kristen Goedde.

Seminars and panels will take place downstairs at HUB-13 from 1PM to 8PM. It’s being sponsored by HoneyGrove (which Heady NJ is also advertising). There will be information on every aspect of growing and harvesting cannabis. Upstairs, Black Cannabis and HUB-13 will host a reception. 

Activists will hold a brief demonstration at the State House at 2 PM. Then they will return to HUB-13 for an afternoon of cultivation education. Then, a traditional seed swap will take place at 6 PM.

Protest on Earth Day

Advocates are asking New Jersey Attorney General Matt Platkin to suspend arresting people for home cultivation. It’s an idea similar to the suspensions related to marijuana possession in 2018 by former Attorney General Gurbir Grewal.  

Andrea Raible, an unregistered medical cannabis patient with life-threatening epilepsy, has been waiting years for access to a personal garden.

“Stigma still stands in the way of safety for patients and caretakers in NJ. Home cultivation can transform quality of life for patients. It’s is a necessity for customized cannabis medicine,” said Raible. “A suspension on prosecutions would help provide immediate relief to those waiting for access.”

“The current prohibition against home cultivation infringes upon the rights of adult New Jerseyans,” said Dr. David Nathan. “That’s why Doctors for Drug Policy Reform strongly supports the legalization of limited home cultivation by adults.”

“As a licensed cannabis retailer, we at HoneyGrove stand for all legal reforms that evolve and improve our state’s cannabis ecosystem. Including home cultivation,” said cannabis operator Dave Valese. “As an (underground) legacy and legal cultivator for many years I find it outrageous that corporations can farm this magnificent plant at large scale for profit. Individuals still face jail time for growing even a couple of plants at home.”

A broad coalition of grassroots organizations and industry operators will participate in the Earth Day home cultivation awareness protest. The list of groups includes NORML NJ, Sativa Cross, CMMNJ, Doctors for Drug Policy Reform (D4DPR), The Last Prisoner Project, Minorities for Medical Marijuana, Students for Sensible Drug Policy (SSDP), Heady NJ and many more. 

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