“We’re tired of people in cannabis being silenced for posting education that is meant to educate Canadians about a substance that is legal across our nation,” said Anne-Marie Fischer, M.Ed., cannabis educator, and the President of the People’s Alliance of Cannabis in Canada (PACC), “Now, the people of cannabis in Canada are speaking out for education, free speech, and the right to discuss something that is a significant part of modern Canadian society.” Last week, PACC launched a petition on change.org entitled “Stop Facebook Inc. from Silencing Legal Cannabis in Canada”, and the petition got immediate support, with hundreds of signatures within the first weekend. “Because of The Cannabis Act, those who work in our cannabis retail stores cannot educate about cannabis in a way that truly answers questions on how cannabis affects the body and mind,” said Michele Parotta, PACC co-founder and advocate for the over 55 demographic of cannabis users, “It’s up to those who have been studying cannabis for years to fill the education gap that our legal markets have caused, and we use platforms like Facebook and Instagram to spread important messaging about the plant.” The People’s Alliance of Cannabis in Canada, known as PACC, represents the interests of professionals and consumers within the growing cannabis space across the nation. Advocacy projects surround their five focus areas: medical cannabis, retail/recreational cannabis, BIPOC inclusion in cannabis, hemp/agriculture, and cannabis advocacy. They are also creating a PACC Membership & Benefits Program, launching in 2021, which will provide crucial supports for those who work in cannabis in Canada that includes medical benefits, mental health support, and legal/business support. Click the photo to sign the petition NOW! “Making informed decisions about cannabis in Canada means having access to cannabis education. There are Facebook groups, pages and individuals that were created to fill the necessary demand for cannabis education in Canada” said Stacy Bobak, RDH, co-founder of PACC, and founder of a medical cannabis focused Facebook group, “They help many people while abiding by the Cannabis Act’s rules and regulations. Yet, now they are being targeted and arbitrarily removed. In the end, it’s the patients who suffer...and they have suffered enough.” Khadisha Thornhill, PACC co-founder, and host of an online community that supports black women in cannabis echoed these concerns: “Because of some of the discussions that happen within my group, we’re being removed from our community-building platforms. When this happens, our members are left without their trusted resource for education on cannabis.” While PACC understands that Facebook Inc. may not change its platform for the cannabis appreciation community of Canada, the organization does hope to bring awareness to the existing education gaps. “If we don’t have the platforms that allow people in cannabis to educate on the plant, we lose our ability to help people find what works for them by talking directly to them about how cannabis works,” said Rev. Kelly Addison, cannabis advocate and PACC co-founder, who has also been put in ‘Facebook Jail’, “This petition exists not only to have our freedom of speech protected, but to also ensure that cannabis consumers are protected when using a powerful plant like cannabis.” PACC encourages all who believe that cannabis education should be able to be spread on online platforms to sign the petition and share it on their social media.
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