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First Annual California Psychedelic Conference Highlights Influential People

The California Psychedelic Conference, hosted by Oakland Hyphae at The East Angel downtown Los Angeles on April 23-24th, is positioning itself to be an indispensable source of passion for the psychedelics sector as it grows more mainstream.

Reggie Harris, the founder of the event, has participated in other psychedelic events like the Psilocybin Cup or the Oakland Psychedelic Conference. In the past, Harris was involved in several psychedelic related events. “This isn’t another event centered around Ivy League educated white males who work in Biotech or Pharma, and have never tripped before,” said Harris. “We’re featuring REAL people from the community, some of whom have been in the psychedelic game for decades.”

Some of the world’s most renowned mushrooms cultivators will be in attendance, as well as therapists, activists, medicine workers, and artists. “There will be deep dive discussions on the real history of psychedelic policy, hosted by people who experienced these moments firsthand,” an Oakland Hyphae press release states. “You can also expect panels on psychedelic parenting and maternity, sex and psychedelics, mushroom cultivation, harm reduction, avoiding the path of cannabis, and so much more.”

The press release also suggests that not becoming more actively involved in the legalization of psychedelics could “become a capitalist nightmare,” so the goal of this event is to highlight some of the industry’s most respected minds to help guide legislation as psychedelics enter the mainstream market.

“There would be no psychedelic community without the legacy community, PERIOD,” said Harris. “These people have put their lives on the line and built this culture for us to be a part of. In a day and age when we talk about ‘Land Back’ and Reparations, we have a unique opportunity to structure the psychedelic landscape in a way that will center the people who built this entire thing on their backs, who’ve been to jail and had their families split up. These people should get rewarded for taking such risks. That’s what we’re doing at the CA Psychedelic Conference.”

Harris is a veteran of more than ten years in politics campaigns. He’s worked locally with Oakland public schools and The Black Organizing Project, and he was also responsible for both western and southwestern campaigns for Color of Change, which is credited as part of the reason that Nevada “turned blue” in the 2020 election. He has worked closely with top mushroom growers and has even been a consultant for a Jamaican testing and farming facility. His advocacy and passion to support “legacy plant medicine workers” has led him to protect the budding mushroom industry from being taken over by corporations.

The pace of legislative efforts to legalize psychedelics is increasing rapidly. Most recently, House Bill 2850 was introduced by Representative Tony Lovasco in Missouri, which if passed, would allow people who suffer from treatment-resistant depression, PSTD or terminal illness to use “dimethyltryptamine, ibogaine, mescaline (except peyote), psilocybin, and psilocyn” for medical treatment.

Last month in Michigan, Decriminalize Nature Michigan announced that it was officially certified to collected signatures to qualify for the November ballot for an initiative that “would decriminalize the possession and cultivation of ‘Natural plants and mushrooms’, reduce penalties for controlled substances that currently include life sentences and lifetime probation, and create pathways for religious organizations and hospitals to develop psychedelic assisted mental health and ceremonial services.” The chapter’s co-director, Julie Barron, describes this initiative as a “rare ray of hope for people who have been suffering.”