Who is the Colorado Criminal Justice Reform Coalition?

Our mission is to reverse the trend of mass incarceration in Colorado. We are a coalition of nearly 7,000 individual members and over 100 faith and community organizations who have united to stop perpetual prison expansion in Colorado through policy and sentence reform.

Our chief areas of interest include drug policy reform, women in prison, racial injustice, the impact of incarceration on children and families, the problems associated with re-entry and stopping the practice of using private prisons in our state.

If you would like to be involved please go to our website and become a member.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Marijuana advocates blast lawmakers at Denver rally - The Denver Post

Marijuana advocates blast lawmakers at Denver rally - The Denver Post

Marijuana advocates who rallied across the street from the state Capitol today had sharp words for lawmakers considering regulations for Colorado's booming medical-marijuana industry.

"Keep your grubby hands off of medical marijuana!" activist Robert Chase shouted toward the Capitol.

About 200 advocates attended the rally — which was timed to begin once Gov. Bill Ritter finished giving his State of the State speech. Many of the speakers at the rally blasted legislative proposals to strongly regulate or effectively outlaw the state's growing number of retail medical-marijuana dispensaries. A number of speakers urged cannabis advocates to contact elected officials to lobby for their cause — though they often cast the relationship between advocate and lawmaker as an adversarial one.

"We deserve a seat at that table," prominent medical-marijuana attorney Robert Corry said. "And if they don't give us a seat at that table, well, I've got a flame-thrower we can use to deal with that table."

Corry said he would soon be unveiling a "patient-centered" proposal for lawmakers to consider. But Corry said he wasn't eager to see any new regulations adopted, arguing that Colorado's current medical-marijuana policy — which leaves dispensaries largely unregulated — is already protected under the state constitution.

Laura Kriho, a cannabis advocate, echoed that.

"We have a 100 percent constitutional right to use medical cannabis," she said. "And we don't see any reasons to give up any of these rights just because some suburban households were offended by Dr. Reefer's 4-foot-high marijuana leaf sign on South Broadway."

A number of prominent medical-marijuana advocacy groups were conspicuously not represented at the rally, and the speakers largely reflected the views of a segment of advocates who have grown frustrated with efforts to work with policymakers on regulations they feel will not restrict the medical-marijuana industry.

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