A few weeks ago, the DEA sent letters to dozens of landlords of medical marijuana dispensaries in the Bay Area. These letters are aimed at intimidating landlords into evicting their tenants, and they understandably scared many providers in activists in the area. Instead of giving in to intimidation, advocates immediately began reaching out to Bay Area mayors to ask them to speak out against the DEA raids and support efforts in Congress to hold investigative hearings on this issue.
I’m happy to say that our own Mayor Dellums was the first to publicly voice his support for providers and to strongly question the tactics of the DEA:
As the mayor of a city that believes in compassionate care, we support Medical Cannabis Dispensaries. We are discouraged to learn of the DEA’s actions that appear to be in opposition to the will of the residents of this city. Rep. Conyers, Chair of the U.S. House Judiciary Committee, expressed deep concern over the DEA landlord threats and other efforts to undermine California law, and committed to sharply questioning these tactics as part of the committee’s oversight efforts. I am grateful for and supportive of Rep. Conyers’ concerns.
Dellums also sent a letter to Rep. Conyers, urging him to “expeditiously hold hearings and examine this very important issue.”
In the past, I’ve expressed some concern here about the Oakland PD assisting with medical marijuana raids and have questioned whether Oaklanders would stand up for medical marijuana in the case of a DEA attack so I was pretty ecstatic to see such strong movement from the Mayor’s office.
I think Dellums’ statement is a great step towards protecting safe access to medical marijuana for Oakland patients. Hopefully other mayors will follow his lead and push our federal representatives towards standing up for patients and California voters.