The Journey to Descheduling

Gotham Buds Joins Senator Gillibrand Calling on DEA to Deschedule Marijuana

On Sunday, January 28th in Harlem, NY Malika Bellamy, our Co-owner, and VP of Communications & Media stood alongside U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gilibrand, U.S. Rep. Jerry Nader, and other local officials with a charge to U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland and the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) to remove or deschedule cannabis as a Schedule I substance from the Controlled Substances Act (CSA).  Currently, the conversation at the federal level has been to reclassify cannabis to a Schedule III substance, which allows people to continue facing criminal charges.

Malika took to the podium with deference and optimism for the communities who have been disproportionately incarcerated and negatively impacted, due to cannabis prohibition enforcement.  Her words echoed the sentiments of not only those who have found themselves under this legal juggernaut, but policy makers who agree that removing cannabis altogether provides a greater opportunity than potential threat.

On October 18th, 2023, Malika and her executive partners, CEO and co-founder Greg Gray, CFO and co-founder Omar Tejeda, and COO Jeff Lopez, successfully opened Gotham Buds, Harlem’s 1st legal cannabis dispensary.  Being Black and Brown, Woman, and Family-owned, Gotham Buds is in a unique position to share how descheduling cannabis ushers in opportunities for economic prosperity, community development and governance, holistic wellness, safer consumption, and healing from injustices.

Describing this move as a “new frontier” and “transformative” for those grossly impacted and their families, while also allowing for the expansion of an industry marked for exponential success, Malika declares what this change will truly mean for so many — freedom.

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