News Anchor Fired for Marijuana to Speak at the Oregon Medical Marijuana Business Conference

   

Cyd Maurer, who made national headlines after being unjustly fired for using marijuana on her own personal time, will be speaking at the Oregon Medical Marijuana Business Conference (OMMBC) in Portland, September 12-13. Specifically, Ms. Maurer will be on a media panel providing insight into how the TV news media works, very valuable information for both cannabis advocates and marijuana businesses. Television, and the local news, are still instrumental media outlets for the burgeoning cannabis industry as so much of what local marijuana businesses do is very news-worthy as opening up a dispensary or hosting a benefit for veterans that utilize medical cannabis marks a shift in culture and could very well be the first time such an event has happened in the locale.

Fortunately, for the cannabis community, Cyd has taken a rather unfortunate personal ordeal and has turned it into a positive for the marijuana movement. While ending criminal arrests and prosecutions are the first step towards equality, there are several more steps to go, including the ability of cannabis consumers to use cannabis on their own personal time, just as alcohol drinkers are allowed, particularly in jobs that aren’t hazardous. Stereotypes demeaning people that happen to utilize cannabis are still rampant in our society and having an over-achieving spokesperson like Cyd really helps us overcome harmful caricatures that have permeated through our culture.

As Noelle Crombie noted recently at Oregonlive.com, Ms. Maurer, who will also be speaking at the Seattle Hempfest this weekend, has received an outpouring of support for coming out of the cannabis closet and that she has been blogging here at Marijuana Politics:

Cyd Maurer said she’s been flooded with positive messages from readers since disclosing she’d been fired from her TV journalism job after testing positive for marijuana use.

“Hundreds of people have reached out to me,” said Maurer, 25. “So many people have reached out and thanked me, it’s been mind-blowing.”

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“The important thing to focus on is that this dialogue is happening and that is what I wanted,” she said.

While the future is bright for the cannabis community and industry, we must always remain vigilant. Setbacks can occur for any political movement or business, for that matter. How we react with the media is so very important, whether we are trying to convey why a marijuana measure is good public policy or why cannabis consumers should support your particular business. Cyd Maurer is in a great position to help advocates and businesses to portray ourselves to the TV media and audience effectively, making her appearance at the OMMBC pertinent and timely. Additionally, Cyd wants to help move our law forward so employees don’t have to suffer the same fate that she did; she is the mix of industry knowledge and activism that is so crucial to our cause.

Anthony Johnson

Anthony, a longtime cannabis law reform advocate, was Chief Petitioner and co-author of Measure 91, Oregon's cannabis legalization effort. He served as director of both the New Approach Oregon and Vote Yes on 91 PACs, the political action committees responsible for the state's legalization campaign. As director of New Approach Oregon, Anthony continues to work towards effectively implementing the cannabis legalization system while protecting small business owners and the rights of patients. He sits on the Oregon Marijuana Rules Advisory Committee and fights for sensible rules at the legislature as well as city councils and county commissions across the state. Anthony helps cannabis business comply with Oregon's laws and advises advocates across the country. He also serves as content director of both the International Cannabis Business Conference and the Oregon Marijuana Business Conference, helping share the vision of moving the cannabis industry forward in a way that maintains the focus on keeping people out of prison and protecting patients. He was a member of the Oregon Health Authority Rules Advisory Committee, assisting the drafting of the administrative rules governing Oregon’s state-licensed medical marijuana facilities. He first co-authored and helped pass successful marijuana law reform measures while a law student at the University of Missouri-Columbia School of Law. He passed the Oregon Bar in 2005 and practiced criminal defense for two years before transitioning to working full-time in the political advocacy realm. His blogs on Marijuana Politics are personal in nature and don't speak for or reflect the opinions of any group or organization.