Tag: City


DC ballot initiative could decriminalize psychedelic plants, like magic mushrooms, in the city

This Election Day, voters in Washington, D.C., will consider a measure that, if approved, would effectively decriminalize the use of psychedelic plants, like ayahuasca and psilocybin mushrooms, more commonly known as magic mushrooms.

Initiative 81, or the Entheogenic Plant and Fungus Policy Act of 2020, would make the investigation and arrest for adult cultivation and use of psychedelic plants one of the lowest law enforcement priorities for the district’s police department. It also contains a non-binding clause asking the D.C. attorney general to not prosecute anyone charged with an offense related to the substances.

Melissa Lavasani, a mom and D.C. government employee who proposed the initiative, called the measure a “small step” toward ending the war on drugs.

“We believe that there is a growing body of research around these substances, and there’s a lot of interest in the research community,” she said. “And our laws should adapt to what the research has indicated.”

The district would follow Denver, Oakland, California and Santa Clara, California, in decriminalizing some or all psychedelic plants. Voters in Oregon are also considering a similar measure, which would set up treatment facilities using psilocybin mushrooms, but would not decriminalize them.

Lavasani saw the success of the decriminalization campaign in Denver and began advocating for a similar measure in the district. She knew the therapeutic value of psychedelics personally after using psilocybin mushrooms and ayahuasca to treat severe postpartum depression.

PHOTO: A vendor poses with harvested psilocybin mushrooms, May 19, 2019 in Denver.

A vendor poses with harvested psilocybin mushrooms, May 19, 2019 in Denver.

“I had zero experience with depression or any real mental health issues,” Lavasani said. “I’ve had a pretty regular, good life. And I had never been in that situation before and I was struggling terribly.”

At the time, she sought a more natural way of treating depression (through cognitive behavioral therapy and other methods), but nothing was working for her.

“At that point in time, I was contemplating suicide because I was so miserable, and my family was really suffering with me,” she said. “I didn’t really see a way out.”

Then, Lavasani came across an interview with mycologist Paul Stamets on the Joe Rogan podcast, in which Stamets talked about the therapeutic benefits of psilocybin mushrooms. After doing her own research, Lavasani decided to try them.

“I would take it in the morning and within a matter of days I started to get my humanity back,” she said. “I started to feel like I used to. I was engaging with my children and I was engaging with my husband again, and the whole world lit up for me.”

But despite how much her mental health improved, the fear of being arrested for using the Schedule I drug persisted.

“It’s a frightening thought to work your entire life for your career and to build your family and to know that it can all be wiped out with one person finding this information out and reporting it to the police,” Lavasani said. “I

In A Small Pennsylvania City, A Mental Crisis Call To 911 Turns Tragic : Shots

Rulennis Munoz (center right) outside Lancaster Courthouse Oct. 14, after learning that the police officer who fatally shot her brother had been cleared of criminal wrongdoing by the Lancaster County District Attorney. Her mother, Miguelina Peña, and her attorney Michael Perna (far right) stood by.

Brett Sholtis/WITF

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Brett Sholtis/WITF

Rulennis Muñoz remembers the phone ringing on Sept. 13. Her mother was calling from the car, frustrated. Rulennis could also hear her brother Ricardo shouting in the background. Her mom told her that Ricardo, who was 27, wouldn’t take his medication. He had been diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia five years earlier.

Ricardo lived with his mother in Lancaster, Pa., but earlier that day he had been over at Rulennis’ house across town. Rulennis remembers that her brother had been having what she calls “an episode” that morning. Ricardo had become agitated because his phone charger was missing. When she found it for him, he insisted it wasn’t the same one.

Rulennis knew that her brother was in crisis and that he needed psychiatric care. But she also knew from experience that there were few emergency resources available for Ricardo unless a judge deemed him a threat to himself or others.

After talking with her mom, Rulennis called a county crisis intervention line to see if Ricardo could be committed for inpatient care. It was Sunday afternoon. The crisis worker told her to call the police to see if the officers could petition a judge to force Ricardo to go to the hospital for psychiatric treatment, in what’s called an involuntary commitment. Reluctant to call 911, and wanting more information, Rulennis dialed the non-emergency police number.

Meanwhile, her mother, Miguelina Peña, was back in her own neighborhood. Her other daughter, Deborah, lived only a few doors down. Peña started telling Deborah what was going on. Ricardo was becoming aggressive; he had punched the inside of the car. Back on their block, he was still yelling and upset, and couldn’t be calmed. Deborah called 911 to get help for Ricardo. She didn’t know that her sister was trying the non-emergency line.

The problems and perils of calling 911 for help with mental health

A recording and transcript of the 911 call show that the dispatcher gave Deborah three options: police, fire or ambulance. Deborah wasn’t sure, so she said “police.” Then she went on to explain that Ricardo was being aggressive, had a mental illness and needed to go to the hospital.

Meanwhile, Ricardo had moved on, walking up the street to where he and his mother lived. When the dispatcher questioned Deborah further, she also mentioned that Ricardo was trying “to break into” his mom’s house. She didn’t mention that Ricardo also lived in that house. She did mention that her mother “was afraid” to go back home with him.

The Muñoz family has since emphasized that Ricardo was never a threat to them. However, by the time police got the message, they believed they were responding to

Anchorage officials say city on ‘dangerous path’

ANCHORAGE, Alaska — Officials in Anchorage, Alaska, say the city is on a “dangerous path” as coronavirus cases rise and are urging people to avoid gatherings and follow orders to wear masks in public.

Acting Mayor Austin Quinn-Davidson says she has been meeting with business leaders, health officials and others to make decisions that protect health but also impose minimal restrictions so businesses can stay open.

The mayor says that “none of us wants another hunker-down” order.

The city’s health director says that after months of dealing with the pandemic, some people may have let down their guard. She says people should stay home except to get food, exercise outside or go to work. She says it is important to wear masks and social distance in public and to avoid contact with those at higher risk for severe illness.



— US plans to buy initial antibody doses from Eli Lilly

— Task force member Giroir: Cases, hospitalizations, deaths up in US – not just testing

— President Emmanuel Macron announces second national lockdown in France starting Friday. German officials agreed four-week partial lockdown.

— Belgium and Czech Republic top Europe’s highest number of coronavirus cases per 100,000 citizens, ahead of hotbeds France and Spain.

— Love blossoms amid pandemic for two TikTok creators in Los Angeles, using goofy dance videos, heartfelt vlogs and affirmations.


— Follow AP’s coronavirus pandemic coverage at http://apnews.com/VirusOutbreak and https://apnews.com/UnderstandingtheOutbreak



MINNEAPOLIS — Minnesota health officials are warning against traditional Halloween festivities amid the recent rise in coronavirus cases statewide.

Officials say that instead of traditional trick-or-treating and indoor haunted houses, people should look to lower risk activities like carving pumpkins and decorating homes or holding virtual gatherings.

he state’s infectious diseases director said Wednesday that warmer weather this weekend may encourage outdoor gatherings, but cautioned against disregarding health guidelines with virus infections rising steadily.

Officials reported 1,916 new coronavirus cases and 19 new COVID-19 deaths. Daily case counts statewide have exceeded 2,000 three times in the past two weeks, and the state has reported more than 1,000 new daily cases for the last 21 days.


DES MOINES, Iowa — Medical professionals in Iowa are expressing concerns that a surge in coronavirus infections and hospitalizations could overwhelm medical facilities if no action is taken to slow the virus’ spread.

Hospitals had 596 coronavirus patients Wednesday, the highest number so far for the state. The 113 patients admitted in the past 24 hours also was the most since the virus surfaced in Iowa last March.

Doctors and hospital officials say they are talking about how to transfer COVID-19 patients between hospitals and enacting surge plans that could turn non-hospital facilities into spots to handle any overflow.

One hospital CEO said that “what we know is if the last four weeks are indicative of what happens over the next four weeks, we will have the system overwhelmed.”



City reports 84 COVID cases; 2 deaths

The City of Midland Health Department is currently conducting their investigation on 84 new confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Midland County bringing the overall case count to 5,378.

The City of Midland Health Department is currently conducting their investigation on 84 new confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Midland County bringing the overall case count to 5,378.

Charles Krupa/Associated Press

The City of Midland Health Department is currently conducting their investigation on 84 new confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Midland County bringing the overall case count to 5,378. Today’s new cases are reflective of lab results from the rest of 10/25 and partial 10/26. There are 1,328 isolated cases, 2,983 recovered, 711 under investigation, 262 unable to locate/refused and 94 COVID-19 related deaths in Midland County.

The City of Midland Health Department will continue to monitor the individuals in accordance with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Today, Midland County, the City of Midland and Midland Health confirmed Midland County’s 93rd and 94th COVID-19 related death.

The 93rd patient, a female in her 80s with underlying health conditions, was being treated at Manor Park. The patient passed away on October 27, 2020.

The 94th patient, a female in her 70s with underlying health conditions, was being treated at Manor Park. The patient passed away on October 28, 2020.

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City dentist rescued by AP cops from abductors | Hyderabad News

Hyderabad/Anantapur: The dentist who was abducted from his clinic in Bandlaguda on Tuesday was rescued in Anantapur on Wednesday by AP cops after they were alerted by Cyberabad police of the likely route taken by the kidnappers.
The main accused Mustafa is a close relative of dentist Behjat Hussain’s (56) wife. He had hatched the plot to get Rs 10 crore in ransom to recoup his losses in business. While seven have been arrested, including six from city and one from the vehicle in Anantapur, Mustafa and 5 others are absconding.
Hussain, a resident of Kismatpura, was abducted from his under-construction clinic at Bandlaguda by four burqa-clad men on Tuesday afternoon. On being alerted by locals, Cyberabad police launched a manhunt to nab the kidnappers by forming 12 special teams.
A few hours after the kidnap, the accused sent a voice message to Hussain’s family through WhatsApp demanding Ra 10 crore as ransom in the form of bitcoins.
They also threatened to kill the victim and his family if the ransom was not paid in 48 hours. Police analysed the call details from the WhatsApp message and tracked their movement.
A few suspects were detained including Md Raheem (18) of Chandrayangutta, who kept a watch on the movement of the dentist, Sumit Chandrakanth Bhosale (28), Akshay Balu Vairekar and Vicky Datta Shinde of Pune, Md Imran and Md Irfan from Yellammabanda for giving logistical support. Based on the confession of the accused and technical evidence, Cyberabad police alerted Anantapur cops about the movement of the accused in a Bolero vehicle towards Karnataka.
Rapthadu sub inspector PT Anjaneyulu and his team first spotted the gang near Marur toll plaza in Anantapur district at 2 am on Wednesday. After an an hour long chase, police surrounded the gang, forcing the accused to abandon the vehicle along with the dentist. Police managed to arrest one of the kidnappers, Sanjay, 19, a student from Udipi in Karnataka.
“Anantapur police intercepted the kidnappers while they were escaping towards Kanaganapalli and rescued the victim,” Cyberabad commissioner V C Sajjanar said.
“Mustafa used to stay in Australia and he incurred huge loss in business. Subsequently, he returned to India and started real estate business in Hyderabad and Pune. Mustafa, who knew about the financial condition of Hussain, hatched a plan to kidnap him along with his friend Mubashir alias Khaled,” Sajjanar said.
The duo roped in other accused from Hyderabad, Pune and Karnataka to execute the plan.
Hussain, who suffered minor injuries on his hands while trying to resist the kidnappers at Bandlaguda, thanked the cops at the press conference.
“I would have been a dead today. I think within 10 minutes of being chased they decided to kill me, but the rescue team saved me,” Hussain said.
Six other accused including Mistafa, Ganesh, Mubashir, Puneet, Prithvi and Siri are absconding. Police seized three cars, seven cell phones, toy pistols and other incriminating evidence from the accused.

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Central Ohio nonprofit’s ‘Farmacy in the City’ program in South Linden to combine diet, medicine

Editor’s note: This story has been updated to correct the number of patients served by the Charitable Pharmacy and which government agency gave it $1.5 million to renovate the building where it is opening a second location.

a sign on the side of the road: Site of the former Eagle Supermarket, 1464 Cleveland Ave., on Tuesday, Oct. 20, 2020 in Columbus, Ohio. The Charitable Pharmacy of Central Ohio and Community Development for All People will open a pharmacy and fresh-food market at the site of the former South Linden carryout, which the city shut down in 2016. The "Farmacy in the City" will open in Spring 2021.

© Joshua A. Bickel/Columbus Dispatch
Site of the former Eagle Supermarket, 1464 Cleveland Ave., on Tuesday, Oct. 20, 2020 in Columbus, Ohio. The Charitable Pharmacy of Central Ohio and Community Development for All People will open a pharmacy and fresh-food market at the site of the former South Linden carryout, which the city shut down in 2016. The “Farmacy in the City” will open in Spring 2021.

The Charitable Pharmacy of Central Ohio will open a second location addressing low-income Franklin County residents’ food and pharmaceutical needs with its “Farmacy in the City” program. 


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The nonprofit’s new site, co-located with Community Development for All People, will feature a pharmacy and fresh food market under one roof. Here, vulnerable Franklin County residents can receive non-narcotic prescription medicine, pharmacy services and healthy food at no cost. 

“Our patients may not have access to healthy food and other resources that you need to stay in those healthy habits to reduce your disease burden,” Charitable Pharmacy executive director Jennifer Seifert said. “We’re really excited now that when someone says, ‘I don’t know what to eat,’ we can bring some resources around them.”

Since 2010, CPCO has contributed $50 million in pharmacy services and prescription medicine, today serving over 7,000 Franklin County residents living at or below 200% of the federal poverty level.

More: Charitable Pharmacy sees more patients, more costs due to COVID-19

CPCO’s model is different from that of free clinics. Pharmacists spend time with patients to understand their medical history, explain the impact of their prescribed medicine and create an action plan for the future, development director Melanie Boyd said.

Despite this decade of positive impact, it’s clear that sometimes medicine isn’t the most pressing need when patients walk through the pharmacy’s doors. Basic needs such as food, shelter and clothing often take precedence. 

After receiving a grant of nearly $100,000 from the Franklin County Board of Commissioners in 2019, CPCO began exploring communities where its support could have the most impact and identified South Linden as a place where it could help the neighborhood achieve better health outcomes.

A rendering of the completed renovations for the Charitable Pharmacy of Central Ohio's fresh market. Slated to open spring 2021, the "farmacy" will be located at 1464 Cleveland Ave. in South Linden in a former Eagle Market.

© Charitable Pharmacy of Central Ohio
A rendering of the completed renovations for the Charitable Pharmacy of Central Ohio’s fresh market. Slated to open spring 2021, the “farmacy” will be located at 1464 Cleveland Ave. in South Linden in a former Eagle Market.

The unfortunate truth is that one’s ZIP code often determines the quality of their health care.

“You go to the suburbs and look at how many pharmacies you have per capita — it’s a real different story in some other sections of the city,” Boyd said. “We know that coming in (to South Linden) as a charitable pharmacy to work with the existing pharmacies, we’re going to be able to meet

Pep Guardiola reveals fitness concerns sustained by crucial Man City defender

During Manchester City’s 1-1 draw with West Ham, Pep Guardiola decided to bring Kyle Walker off the pitch and replaced him with Oleksandr Zinchenko – with the Ukrainian international recently returning from injury. 

Following the match, the Manchester City boss went on to reveal the reasons behind his decision, citing the fact that Kyle Walker has started every game for the club this season. Guardiola was also quick to confirm that the England right-back was ‘exhausted’.

“He [Kyle Walker] was exhausted. He [Kyle Walker] has played every minute here and with the national team. He is exhausted. I don’t think [he will be rested in Marseille], tomorrow we will regenerate, we will travel to France and see how the people feel.”

fbl-eng-pr-west-ham-man-city (7)
(Photo by JUSTIN TALLIS/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

Pep Guardiola also revealed after the game as to why he decided to bring on Zinchenko as opposed to the more attacking-minded Ferran Torres, who certainly impressed in the midweek victory over Porto. Guardiola claimed that he wanted to have a left-footed player on the left, and further explained:

“It was to have a left-footed [player on] left, and right-footed on the right. That was the reason why – on the left, we go inside and the right we have problems to lose balls and needed to play more on the left.”

Although Manchester City had to make do with a draw, ending a fantastic run of nine consecutive victories over West Ham, Kevin De Bruyne’s return to action will prove to be a huge boost for Pep Guardiola’s side, who now turn their attention to Champions League duties on Tuesday night.


Follow us on Twitter for live updates: @City_Xtra

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Mobile dentist to provide care for children in Carson City

The Ronald McDonald Care Mobile will offer oral health care to children and pregnant women at three locations in Carson City next week.

The Ronald McDonald Care Mobile, in partnership with Nevada Health Centers and Ronald McDonald House Charities, will offer oral health care to children up to age 21 and to pregnant women at three locations in Carson City  Oct. 27-29.

The RMCM offers the same services provided in a brick and mortar dental facility and is staffed with a dentist, dental assistants and office assistants.

COVID precautions will be in place. Preventive dental services will be provided in addition to emergency restorative care. Call 800-787-2568 to schedule an appointment.

Services will be provided at the following times:

  • 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Oct. 27 at Empire Elementary School, 1260 Monte Rosa Drive
  • 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Oct. 28 at Empire Elementary School, 1260 Monte Rosa Drive
  • 7:30 a.m. to noon Oct. 29 at McDonald’s, 3095 S. Carson St.

Nevada Health Centers accepts most dental insurance plans, Medicaid and Nevada Check-up.

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Fake dentist caught in entrapment ops in Tacloban City

Fake dentist caught in entrapment ops in Tacloban City

TACLOBAN City – A fake dentist was caught in flagrante delicto while installing braces on a poseur patient on Wednesday inside his residence in this city.

P/Maj. Duane Francis Ducducan, Criminal Investigation and Detection Group-Leyte Provincial Head, identified the suspect as Romnick Macariola, 28 years old, and a resident of Brgy. 74, Bliss 3 Lower, Nulatula here.

Ducducan said an entrapment operation was conducted together with the Tacloban City Police Office against the suspect who was reportedly practicing dentistry illegally.

The operation stemmed from the complaint of the Philippine Dental Association- Leyte Dental Chapter on the rampant illegal practice of dentistry by unqualified individuals, including the suspect.

Also seized from the suspect were retainers, cast, boodle money, shoe glue, and other medical and dental equipment.

Ducducan said Macariola will be charged for Violation of Republic Act 9484, the “Philippine Dental Act of 2007,” which punishes the illegal practice of dentistry, dental hygiene, or dental technology.

The suspect may face a fine of not less than P200,000 or more than P500,000, or suffer imprisonment for two to five years, or both. 





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Tucson City Council Tables Vote On UArizona Coronavirus Testing

TUCSON, AZ — Whether or not University of Arizona students will be forced to take a coronavirus test before the holidays remains up in the air following Tuesday’s meeting of the Tucson City Council.

A motion to table the vote for a later date passed 5-1. The resolution would have required the university to test all students prior to travel for Thanksgiving break and after returning as part of their enrollment. The school has over 40,000 students enrolled.

In a statement, Ward 6 Councilman Steve Kozachik said he recognized the short period of time between now and Thanksgiving break would make a rule like this difficult to implement but he still believes in the resolution’s importance to public health.

“Nobody disagrees with the goal,” he wrote. “The challenge is in how the policy is put into effect. Let’s begin work on the mandatory testing policy together now, and implement it as soon as the details can be developed. At the very least however I believe all students should be required to test negative prior to returning to Tucson and being readmitted to classes in January.”

The plan would require coordination between the city, the university and the Pima County Health Department. The university, for one, does not believe that requiring testing as a factor in enrollment is the way to go.

“Our primary goal is to minimize the impact of student travel on community spread of COVID-19,” President Robert C. Robbins said in a statement Monday.

To help battle a potential uptick in cases resulting from holiday breaks, the university is ramping up its testing as Thanksgiving break approaches in late November. Testing will be done on an appointment basis starting Nov. 9; it is still free and open to walk-ins currently.

The university has also opted to cancel spring break in 2021, instead offering five “reading days” so students can get some time off. The spring semester is still due to start Jan. 13 and end on May 5.

This article originally appeared on the Tucson Patch

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