New Group Pushes for Reforms on 'Magic Mushrooms'


Psilocybin, or "magic" mushrooms. - JOHNS HOPKINS UNIVERSITY
  • Johns Hopkins University
  • Psilocybin, or "magic" mushrooms.

A new Memphis group is pushing for “common sense psilocybin laws in Tennessee and across the county” and will host an event Thursday called “Mushrooms Demystified.”

The group, called Psilo, announced late last week that it is now officially registered as a nonprofit organization. It said it will begin its work in Tennessee “because we live in Memphis and we might as well start here.”

  • Psilo/Facebook

Psilo’s first year will be spent on grassroots organizing and education, according to its director Carlos Ochoa. Organizers said that will include many one-on-one conversations about psilocybin, the psychedelic drug compound produced by many species of mushrooms (sometimes called “magic mushrooms”).

“We estimate that there are nearly 100 million people who could potentially benefit from psilocybin treatment,” Ochoa said in a Psilo news letter last week. “This is big news for patients who seek relief from depression, anxiety, post traumatic stress disorder, and potentially Alzheimer's disease. And we want to spread the word.”

The group is already tracking legislation, according to its website. There, you can read about successful psilocybin decriminalization efforts already passed by officials in Denver, Colorado and Oakland, California.

Ochoa said Psilo is raising money for the effort, hoping to get 100 monthly donors in the next month. Also, Psilo said it is looking for board members for the organization.

To find out more about the group or about psilocybin in general, Ochoa is hosting a talk Thursday. During “Mushrooms Demystified,” Ochoa will discuss ”mushrooms in agriculture and how mushrooms are shaping the future of psychiatry in treating mental illness.” The event is on October 10th from 5:30 p.m.-7 p.m. at Memphis Tilth, 575 Suzette.

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