To support the development of important ethical and safety standards for the use of psychedelic medicines in spiritual, clinical, and community use settings, and to have an ongoing dialogue about medicine use that is safe from harassment and abuse, the Center for Medicinal Mindfulness, Psychedelic Sitters School, our Non-Profit, and the Extended-State DMT Program fully complies with all applicable, local, state, and federal laws, and adheres to the principles in the following documents:
• The Council on Spiritual Practices, Code of Ethics for Spiritual Guides
• MAPS MDMA-Assisted Psychotherapy Code of Ethics
• Chacruna’s Ayahuasca Community Guide for the Awareness and Prevention of Sexual Abuse
• Google Event Community Guidelines and Anti-Harassment Policy
• Statement on Open Science and Open Praxis with Psilocybin, MDMA, and Similar Substances
• Medicinal Mindfulness Safe Community Policy, as outlined below
To participate in any MM related services, all psychotherapists, psychedelic therapists, ministers, facilitators, guides, trainers, students, members, independent contractors, employees, directors, and professional service providers agree to follow these standards of basic ethical conduct. This document also provides full disclosure to our members of MM community policies.
The leadership of Medicinal Mindfulness fully recognizes that this is an evolving document and is therefore incomplete. This is shared, not in the spirit of creating a “right or wrong” polarity, but as part of an ongoing discussion regarding consensual agreements that support community sustainability and the reduction of harm.
Any member of any MM related program is invited to ask questions, offer suggestions, recommendation, and changes to this policy by emailing email@example.com.
This document is published on our website at: https://medicinalmindfulness.org/safe-community-policy/.
The Safe Community Policy discusses important topics that are relevant to our community’s safety.
1. Introduction & Overview with Notice of Non-Discrimination and Prohibition of Harassment
2. Medicine People and Responsible Medicine Use
3. Community Code of Conduct
4. Professional Code of Conduct
6. Future Possibilities - Conclusion
Notice of Non-Discrimination and Prohibition of Harassment
Committed to equality of transformational opportunity, the Center for Medicinal Mindfulness does not discriminate in offering access to its programs and activities, or employment on the basis of race, color, gender, age, national or ethnic origin, religion, disability, veteran’s status, sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression, responsible medicine use (as defined in the MM Safe Community Policy), or any other status protected by law.
1. INTRODUCTION AND OVERVIEW
We believe it is important to firmly and explicitly state that Medicinal Mindfulness is committed to being a Safe Community for all People, including religious and cultural minorities, Black, Indigenous, People of Color (BIPOC), the LGBTQ community, women, and people with disabilities. We believe it is our responsibility to be an active voice in the conversation of inclusivity and diversity by embodying and promoting important principles of safety and accountability.
The psychedelic community is vulnerable to unsafe situations and people. There are many examples of people outside of our community using their positions of authority; professionally, legally, or within family systems, to harm, harass or take advantage of psychedelic medicine users. There are also people who pretend to be members of the psychedelic community who use the vulnerabilities associated with being a medicine person to take advantage of them, or use medicines with others in unsafe, manipulative, financially inappropriate, or sexually coercive and abusive ways. It is important for all of us to develop, implement, and fully embody policies that protect our most vulnerable members from both accidental and intentional harm.
Some Medicinal Mindfulness members are medicine people who have experienced persecution, discrimination, oppressive social structures, systemic racism, and are sometimes survivors of assault, abuse, or harassment, often because of core aspects of their identity, Medicinal Mindfulness does not tolerate abusive, harassing or disruptive behavior within the Medicinal Mindfulness community, or directed toward members of our community.
Because MM represents a client and membership population with a mostly unrecognized core identity, that of being a “medicine person,” and many of our members have been targets of discrimination and harassment, Medicinal Mindfulness records all evidence of harassment directed towards our members and our organization and will contact the relevant authorities when and if it ever becomes necessary to do so. Medicinal Mindfulness only works in legal settings. Our programs have been reviewed by legal experts and we will continue to receive legal guidance as our program evolves. As a legally compliant psychedelic organization, the Center for Medicinal Mindfulness is in an uncommon position to safely report any threats of violence or harassment to the authorities without fear of legal retaliation. We will work with our legal team to determine the appropriate course of action in these situations.
Medicinal Mindfulness representatives can advise those interested in exploring psychedelic cultures, healing opportunities, or working with other medicine practitioners, on what to ask, how to stay safe, and how to prepare for life transforming experiences in intentional communities, or in the care of others.
As an organizational representative of a diverse community of medicine people, Medicinal Mindfulness strives to be a safe space for all community members and participants in our programs. Medicinal Mindfulness strives to make our services affordable to those with limited financial resources. We actively advertise a scholarship rate for our community events and training programs. Please contact us if you would like to learn more about our scholarship program.
Safe Community Committee and Contact Information
The Center for Medicinal Mindfulness is committed to supporting our members and the local psychedelic community in a way that is in alignment with the core values of psychedelic culture. To that end, we have created a Safe Community Committee that will provide oversight and support for our members and our organization.
Currently, this Committee is comprised of Dr. Carla Clements, MM non-profit board member, Alison McQueen, MA, LPC, Co-Director and Clinical Director of the Medicinal Mindfulness Clinic, and a female representative from our Leadership Team.
You can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions or concerns.
This is a non-emergency reporting procedure. The email will be received by Dr. Clements, and reviewed by the Safe Community Committee.
In case of emergencies, please do not hesitate to call 911, or the local Safe House hotline at 303-444-2424 or email@example.com.
2. MEDICINE PEOPLE AND RESPONSIBLE MEDICINE USE
The Center for Medicinal Mindfulness is a public advocate for the intentional use of cannabis and other psychedelic medicines, and for their legalization and regulation. We affirm that psychedelics are inherently positive in their nature, but like any powerful tool, they can be misused and can cause real harm. MM acknowledges all aspects of psychedelic medicine use so that we can best keep our community healthy and sustainable.
A “Medicine Person” is someone who identifies as having a core identity related to “responsible medicine use,” particularly in regards to psychedelics and cannabis. Responsible medicine users fully acknowledge the risks and benefits of their substance use and are open to exploring ways to bring additional skill, understanding, and safer use practices to their use of substances, including periods of abstinence, known as “Medicine Fasts.” Psychedelic medicines are generally used with intention in safe or sacred settings, and medicines and contexts of use that may interfere with safe and sustainable use practices are generally avoided.
The Center for Medicinal Mindfulness is a Psychedelic Harm Prevention and Education program. We strive to prevent, not just reduce any harm associated with psychedelic medicines so that they can be used to their fullest potential and for the greatest good.
We non-judgmentally support individuals who currently use cannabis, psychedelics, and other substances. While we support current legalization efforts of cannabis and psychedelic medicines for personal, clinical, and spiritual uses, the act of political activism and legalization efforts are not part of our primary mission. Our primary mission, as a community of medicine people, is to provide transformational healing services to our larger community, and to explore the potential of these medicines in advanced creative problem-solving, within a safe, healthy and sustainable community environment.
We provide a safe community space for those who identity as “medicine people,” as well as those seeking healing and transformation through skillful psychedelic medicine use practices, and those seeking to redefine their relationship to substances and develop safer, healthier, and more skillful use practices.
Medicinal Mindfulness members understand that responsible medicine use is a core responsibility for the health of our program, our community, and our members. It is the responsibility of senior members of Medicinal Mindfulness to compassionately and without judgement educate all of our members regarding perceived concerns associated with unsafe, unintegrated, or unskillful substance use practices.
Cannabis, Psychedelics & Safe Use
Factors that contribute to unsafe or unskillful use include: overuse and frequent of psychedelics and MDMA, poly use and high doses, using untested chemical compounds, using narcotics, stimulants, prescriptions, alcohol, tobacco and other drugs, sometimes in combination with psychedelics, MDMA or cannabis, and cannabis overuse, particularly in the form of cannabis concentrates. Lack of intention and integration is also a primary factor in unsafe or unskillful use.
In terms of frequency, MM errs on the side of “less is better” and is currently evaluating best practices based on the available research. It is our experience that the most successful guides use psychedelic medicines infrequently but on a regularly scheduled basis, and have personal development practices not directly associated with medicine use. Successful guides also stay away from addictive substances.
Although tobacco is considered a sacred medicine by many psychedelic medicine traditions, MM also acknowledges the addictive nature of this substance and does not allow it in ceremony so that we can best support members who wish to remain tobacco free.
Using psychedelics less frequently greatly reduces the risks of a medicine related struggle. Behaviors sometimes associated with unhealthy use include a pattern of irritable mood associated with withdrawal symptoms or neurotransmitter depletion, irrational or disordered thinking, a pattern of post-journey psychological contractions, shadow activations that include shadow projection, splitting and triangulation, and trauma related episodes, that may include mania, dissociation, fits of rage, paranoia, and delusion. While extreme situations are very uncommon, MM acknowledges that they can happen in any psychedelic medicine community and takes preventative measures to best address them.
Members who exhibit behaviors associated with addiction will be supported and referred to an allied addictions counselor who is knowledgeable and supportive of skillful use of psychedelics and cannabis for treatment. Safe medicine use practices are a primary factor in determining how and to what degree someone can actively participate in our program. Medicinal Mindfulness strongly encourages our members to speak about concerns regarding substance use so they can be adequately addressed, healed, and transformed.
Medicinal Mindfulness instructors are trained to assess the differences between disruptive behavior and addiction with behavior associated with breakthrough transformational experiences that can sometimes be emotionally expressive and psychologically triggering. Breakthrough transformational experiences are sometimes a necessary part of the healing and awakening process and are fully supported by our community in a safe and appropriately contained way.
Antidote and Reset - Medicine Fasts
Taking a short or extended breaks from certain medicines or all medicines is called a Medicine Fast, and is a beneficial self-care practice for both healthy and struggling medicine practitioners. Fasts give us valuable information about our own process and how to further integrate our psychedelic experiences. Some fasts can be as short as a few days or weeks to as long as 6 months or a year or more. Fast are especially important after a series of sessions that have happened quickly, or after a period of heavy medicine use.
Cannabis, Psychedelics & Mental Health
Experiences and trainings facilitated by the Center for Medicinal Mindfulness are very safe but they are not for everyone. While there is significant scientific evidence that supports the skillful and intentional use of cannabis and other psychedelics to alleviate or significantly reduce the symptoms of physical and psychological disorders, people with serious mental health disorders have occasionally come to events like these with the unrealistic expectation that these experiences alone will cure or alleviate their mental health problems, and often without understanding the necessity for additional support or treatments when working with serious concerns. Unstable interpersonal relationships and a history of various treatments can be additional factors which make it difficult for such people to benefit from Medicinal Mindfulness events.
In rare occasions, prior mental health concerns and the unsafe or skillful use of psychedelics or other drugs, activates unhealthy and destructive behavior, sometimes in extreme expressions. Medicinal Mindfulness members are encouraged to speak up and ask questions about any concerns they have or that are brought to their attention regarding our community or any of its members, including facilitators, owners, and senior members.
Our capacity as a small consciousness community makes it impossible for us to properly care for people with significant psychiatric or physical health concerns, especially ones that are contraindications for using psychedelics, within the context of our community events and trainings. Although our events and trainings can be beneficial and very safe for almost all participants, these events are not a substitute for medical or psychiatric treatment and we do not recommend it for people with serious psychiatric disorders or physical conditions that may impair their ability to participate safely.
Contraindications (reasons not to use psychedelics) include, but are not limited to, pregnancy, severe physical health problems, clinically significant acute anxiety or other mood disorders, psychosis, bipolar disorders, personality disorders, acute/unprocessed trauma and PTSD, acute addictions, suicidal ideation/self harm, and tendencies for disruptive behavior. Our events and trainings are also not appropriate for persons with cardiovascular problems, severe hypertension, recent surgery or fractures, acute infectious illness, or epilepsy.
Since unrecognized mental health episodes can harm psychedelic communities, we believe that the more open the dialogue and discourse the better. We are an open and legally compliant psychedelic organization. We value all feedback received from the larger community.
While group experiences may not be the best context for transformational experiences for some people, we also offer individualized services through the MM Psychedelic Therapy Clinic for people who have significant clinical concerns, particularly when addressing and healing trauma and PTSD. We have a therapeutic referral resource program and can work with your psychotherapist, doctor, counselor, or psychiatrist to determine the best treatment options.
Medicinal Mindfulness has created a “Psychedelic-Cannabis Safety Self-Assessment” for anyone interested in our services to review. This can be found on our program websites. An assessment interview and specialized training are both required before becoming a sitter, member, or volunteer of our program, and before attending certain medicine related events. Please review the assessment beforehand to determine anything that should be discussed with a Medicinal Mindfulness facilitator.
Reality Testing, Feelings, Beliefs, and Exploring Novel Theories
Scientific inquiry and exploring new ideas are core values of Medicinal Mindfulness. While we also acknowledge the importance and legitimacy of the diverse spiritual and religious beliefs of our community members, the observations, experiences, and beliefs of our members will always be assessed for a factual basis and any propensity to cause direct or indirect harm. While many of our members are naturally drawn towards looking at underlying causes and hidden factors of shared experiences, and thrive in novelty and exploring creative ideas, Medicinal Mindfulness always strives to be factual in our assessments and grounded in scientific research and inquiry. Reality testing is also an important clinical assessment tool to determine the authentic or delusional nature of extreme states of consciousness and uncommon beliefs. For this reason, a member’s feelings and beliefs about a situation or experience will always be assessed by the available factual evidence and from a professional understanding of clinically significant mental health symptoms.
Cannabis, Psychedelics & the Law
The use of cannabis in any of our events and trainings, either in person or online, is completely optional. MM members agree to only consume cannabis where it is safe for to do so, in a private location, and agree to not drive for the remainder of the day. MM can only recommend attending MM related programs if cannabis can be legally used, either through obtaining a medical card, or where cannabis is legal for adult consumption. Where cannabis is not legal, MM offers the training as an education and psychedelic harm reduction program only.
MM does not advocate for using psilocybin where it is not legal. Psilocybin microdosing education is solely provided as a harm reduction service to our members.
All MM members agree to take full responsibility for their own safety, legality, and personal employment requirements.
Medicinal Mindfulness Substance Use Policy
As public advocates for the intentional use of psychedelic medicines, safety and legality are extremely important for the ongoing sustainability of MM programs. Due to necessary legal obligations to stay safe, we fully comply with strict medicine use requirements and require that members do the same when attending MM related events or within our community. Community sustainability is our highest priority.
MM only provides cannabis and ketamine related services, and only in legal settings. MM will begin working with other psychedelic medicines only when it is legal to do so, or in international settings where the medicines are legal. MM does not work with or provide illegal substances. As a harm reduction program, MM supports members and clients who choose to personally use illicit substances through education and psychological support services.
Please note, MM cannabis-related programs are not designed to support other psychedelic substance use safely, nor would it be legal for us to do so. Please support the success of MM programs and the psychedelic legalization movement by respecting the boundaries around illicit substance use.
Bringing or consuming illicit substances and/or alcohol is expressly forbidden before, during, after, or surrounding any Medicinal Mindfulness event, session, program, or training retreat.
The use, misuse, or overuse of pharmaceuticals and other substances that may interfere with the safe use of cannabis, ketamine, or breathwork practices is also expressly forbidden.
Cannabis use is only allowed in designated areas or at designated times at specified events, sessions or training retreats. Ketamine is only provided in certain, medically supervised settings.
A designated driver after imbibing cannabis or ketamine is always required until the next day after use.
Prospective students or members with current, acute addictions, recent history of addiction, or seeking addiction treatment are strongly encouraged to speak to an MM representative for support before attending any of our training or community related events.
While there is significant evidence that cannabis and other psychedelics can be used to treat addictions safely and effectively, treating addictions require a specific and very structured protocol to ensure the safety of clients and our community. Participating in our services requires a commitment to abstinence, the ongoing support of a certified addictions counselor, and an openness to receiving feedback when addictive traits or behaviors are witnessed. Medicinal Mindfulness can refer clients to psychedelic-friendly addictions counselors for additional mental health support.
Medicinal Mindfulness facilitators are trained to tell the difference between illicit substance use and mental health emergencies. Participants who use or bring any illicit substance to an MM event will be immediately assessed for safety and then either asked to leave or provided a taxi service, at their expense, if intoxicated. Participants asked to leave will be liable for any costs associated with disrupting any of our programs or events. No refunds will be issued to a participant asked to leave. Certain conditions may be required to participate further in the program, including but not limited to medicine fasting.
Medicinal Mindfulness Strictly Prohibits Referrals to Underground Practices or Communities
Medicinal Mindfulness fully supports psychedelic friendships. As a harm reduction strategy, connecting with others with a shared interest is far safer than just solo experiences. We also believe it is important to create a safe space for our members to share some of our most meaningful life experiences, and to sometimes share those with our friends and family. We do not prohibit talking about private experiences in psychedelics. The boundary we request awareness around is not sharing information about obtaining illegal substances, or about professional facilitators or circles in the underground community. Be mindful of this boundary as it is ambiguous. In your private life, please stay safe and follow the guidelines on pg 12: Psychedelic Experience Agreement - v2 2021. Remember that your actions can negatively affect the stability of the community.
We fully acknowledge and respect that some of our members have underground personal or professional practices and understand that safely sharing resources is common and socially acceptable in many psychedelic communities. With that being said, MM only functions in legal spaces, and is in the “spotlight” of society and law enforcement agencies. You are also here to learn from our program, not promote already established underground practices. For these reason, MM asks all members to neither inquire about obtaining illegal substances, nor how to be introduced to circles and facilitators of illegal substances. This is to protect both our members and our overall program. With that being said, MM doesn’t have any authority over what friends do together in private settings. It’s okay to have friends in our program.
All of our members should absolutely feel no obligation to engage in anything that they are uncomfortable with or not ready for. Any member can have very meaningful experiences in our program and never touch a substance.
A core mission of the Center for Medicinal Mindfulness is to regularly show society and our members that psychedelic medicine practitioners no longer have to engage in “underground” or illegal activities to have a thriving psychedelic medicine practice, both professionally and personally.
Fundamentally, Medicinal Mindfulness represents a legally compliant psychedelic therapy clinic and training program, and the community that has come together to explore legal psychedelic practices. Therefore, discussing professional underground practitioners or communities is not congruent with the needs, mission or values of MM.
MM cannot encourage or condone the purchase, sale, transfer, or use of illegal substances, nor condone partaking in any unlawful activities. Please do not buy, sell, transfer, or attend any MM events on any illegal substances or share information on how to acquire them.
Please do not share the name of underground practitioners that you know. If you sit, or serve medicine in a spiritual community, please do not offer those services to other members. We cannot vouch for the safety, skill, or conduct of these experiences and they are therefore not allowed to be promoted in this space. The Medicinal Mindfulness community should not be used as a a referral source for any underground practices or experiences.
Peer supervision and credentialing classes are not an appropriate container to discuss underground experiences, only sessions associated with our training program. If you are engaged in underground experiences, personally or with other members, but outside of the MM program, we ask that this not be discussed in these classes. Instead, our monthly integration circles that are managed by our clinic are legally protected spaces to discuss these experiences from a clinical, integration support, and psychedelic harm reduction orientation. We encourage any of our members who have questions regarding the underground uses of psychedelics to join our monthly integration circle to receive therapeutic support for their psychedelic medicine experiences. An online forum for integration support is also available to our members on the mypss.org platform.
Because of our prohibitions on illicit substances as a legally compliant psychedelic organization, using, bringing, and/or offering an illicit substance or service to another participant at any of our events is considered a form of harassment and in violation of the Safe Community Policy. Repeatedly asking about or offering illicit substances or underground practices or events may result in the termination of membership. If MM members hear of anyone asking these questions or promoting such circles or facilitators, we ask you to remind them of this policy. For safety reasons, participants are encouraged to notify an MM facilitator if they see or hear anything related to members offering professional underground services or illicit substances.
Medicinal Mindfulness also has established guidelines for recommending legal psychedelic experiences, trainings, organizations, and retreats, for example, ayahuasca retreats in a country where they are legal, or psilocybin centers in Jamaica or Holland, or even other psychedelic therapy programs. While it is very appropriate for members to share information about these organizations, trainings, services or retreats, these discussions are not a recommendation from Medicinal Mindfulness for these services. MM and members are encouraged to share their experiences with the community so we can learn about other programs.
Medicinal Mindfulness sometimes offers “microdosing coaching” of psilocybin and other substances to our members from an education and psychedelic harm reduction orientation. Under no circumstance will MM representatives discuss how to obtain the required substances for microdosing purposes.
3. COMMUNITY CODE OF CONDUCT
The MM community code of conduct is a starting place to begin conversations around ethical conduct for members of our community. The code of conduct also guides the decision making and interventions of MM community leaders. Additional codes are found in the documents listed on the first page of this policy.
MM members understand that being a sustainable guide requires ongoing self-care. Effective self-care strategies include practices that are outside medicine experiences. These include physical exercise, adequate nutrition and sufficient sleep, psychotherapy, mindfulness practices, hobbies, and connections with others outside of medicine related communities.
Community membership and participation in programs of non-medicine intentional communities are strongly encouraged.
Asking for support is strongly encouraged.
MM members do not share pipes at in-person events. If offered a pipe out of habit, it is appropriate to politely decline the offer.
MM Members understand that working in the field of psychedelic therapy is complex, and sometimes self-care means taking a break from MM related program. Member agrees to be mindful of their own needs in this regard, and to proactively address them, offering as much notice as possible to MM if they have leadership responsibilities and choose to or need to take a break from the program. A member going on sabbatical also agrees to support MM in transitioning any services. In doing so, this agreement and any services provided are PAUSED for the duration of the time off. After a sabbatical, member agrees to intentionally reenter the community only when ready.
Sexual Conduct and Physical Touch
MM members ask before initiating physical touch such as hugging another member, and do not take it personally if there’s a “no” in response. MM represents a complex community engaging in transformational healing. Sometimes touch is welcome, and sometimes it is not.
Both our online and in-person trainings are akin to intensive psychedelic journey retreats. As with other psychedelic retreats, new sexual relationships between members are expressly prohibited during the training period. New relationships created with intention take time. Sex can wait.
MM leaders do not engage in sexual intercourse, sexual contact, or sexual intimacy with a participant or member, or a participant’s spouse or partner, or immediate family member, during the therapeutic or mentorship relationship or after this therapeutic/mentorship relationship ends.
All MM related events are never sexual. While we acknowledge that in certain circumstances, psychedelics and cannabis are used in skillful and ethical professional settings with tantric practices and physical therapy, MM does not engage in, or teach these activities. Because of the additional risks associated with sexual abuse and misconduct in these modalities, particularly within the psychedelic community, MM prohibits the recommendation of “sexual healing” practices or practitioners, just as with illicit substances and underground events, within the MM community.
Online Community Forum
Participating in the online community forum on the mypss.org platform is strongly encouraged. This is a professional training community and all communications should be professional in nature. Members of the forum are required to use their real name and last initial for member’s profile. Professional facilitator members are invited to share their full name. By participating in the forum, all MM members agree to be respectful, factual, and kind in your communication, and to keep conversations and identities of other members confidential.
MM members are never required to provide private contact information with other community members to participate in any of our programs. Small group leaders and mentors have access to this information for official communication purposes.
All MM members are encouraged to use the forum and not share private contact information or social media information until you get to know other members over time. MM members are encouraged to only share what they feel safe in sharing.
Under no circumstances are MM members allowed to provide information on how to obtain illegal medicines, or information on underground practitioners on the community forum.
“Cannabis is Not a Crime"
While some of our members engage in psychedelic medicine activities that are not legal, MM acknowledges the moral questions and historical contexts of psychedelic medicine prohibitions. MM is a strong advocate for the decriminalization of all psychedelic substances, within the context of appropriate regulations. With that being said, we hold members to a high standard of conduct if they choose to explore beyond the edges of what is legal. Using the knowledge of someone’s illegal psychedelic medicine use against them in a dispute unrelated to medicine use is strictly prohibited. Medicine people are specifically vulnerable in legal disputes because of personal use practices.
This prohibition does not cover other illegal, unethical, or unsafe activity conducted by someone in the MM community. Members are invited to contact the Safe Community Committee by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions or if they feel unsafe in any situation associated with medicine use.
Medicinal Mindfulness facilitators remain open and unconditionally accepting while maintaining the necessary boundaries required for safety and transformation. Many community members and our facilitators are mental health professionals and are therefore “mandatory reporters” under Colorado law. Community member information and participation in our program remain strictly confidential except in the extremely rare circumstance that you could harm yourself or another.
All information shared with us is confidential except in the following circumstances: (a) you sign a release of information for a specific individual or agency; (b) child or elder abuse; (c) you are an imminent danger to self or others; (d) subpoena of records in a criminal procedure; (e) the situation requires additional support from the Medicinal Mindfulness Community (see the next 2 sections for additional information). Additionally, MM Facilitators may consult with a supervisor or confidential peer supervision group without disclosing identifying information. The purpose of a consultation is to enhance our ability to help our members, and these individuals are required to follow the same standards of confidentiality previously described.
Confidentiality is requested at the beginning of every group or community experience. You are free to share with friends any stories of your own experiences, but we request that other participant names and their experiences remain confidential. While our work is not a secret, it is important for everyone’s participation to remain private for safety purposes. This is a required commitment to participate in MM events and other programs. The Medicinal Mindfulness Online Community Forum is designed to balance privacy needs with community engagement.
The programs of Medicinal Mindfulness include individual and group healing sessions, coaching and guided sessions and ceremonies, classes on mindfulness and journeywork, community gatherings and presentations, Psychedelic Sitters School, and the co-development of programs that provide mutual benefit to our shared community through the MM non-profit. The Medicinal Mindfulness community is small, and there are sometimes community events with practitioners and their clients both participating in the same group experience. Medicinal Mindfulness is committed to regularly discussing the health of the community and how we can move forward with the highest integrity in our work together. Safe and appropriate boundaries are extremely important to the Medicinal Mindfulness community.
Community Support Interventions
The community orientation of Medicinal Mindfulness is one of our most important healing interventions available. Many of our members come from emotionally unsafe situations and are isolated in their interests and values. Many have also been repeatedly shamed for their interest in psychedelics. Therefore, entering into and participating in the community programs of an intentional and safe psychedelic community can be both healing and evocative for our members. Your work with MM is not just in an isolated container, but held within a larger ecosystem of an intentional community structure.
Community sustainability and individual safety and wellbeing are our highest priorities. MM members are encouraged to seek friendships and accountability from other Medicinal Mindfulness community members, and if necessary, MM facilitators may intervene in unsafe behavior or unhealthy dynamics by supporting community conversations between members. If necessary, MM facilitators reserve the right to initiate our “Man Overboard” protocol, in which Medicinal Mindfulness supports a member by asking for another community member’s support on their behalf without requesting permission first.
Situations that can elicit this form of intervention can range from requests for a simple check in to interventions around significant safety concerns, severe mental health crises and acute drug abuse or misuse. Medicinal Mindfulness also reserves the right to contact a member’s emergency contact in these circumstances if necessary. MM will be as intentional and compassionate in its communication as possible and will only disclose enough information to ensure any crisis is handled skillfully and safely. Sometimes additional requirements or temporary limitations may be placed on a member’s participation in certain events for safety reasons. Different versions of a Medicine Fast are the most common recommendations provided.
This work is very real, with real life consequences. Psychedelic medicines elicit life transforming experiences that happen both in the experience itself and in our everyday lives. These are not always easy, and the psychedelic healing processes we initiate sometimes evoke deeply impactful healing experiences in our daily lives. The primary responsibility of Medicinal Mindfulness is to keep our members as safe as possible during this transformational period. We have learned that community support is one of our most powerful tools in doing so. By working with Medicinal Mindfulness, you agree to this form of community support.
Psychedelic Experience Agreement - v2 2021
MM members agree to comply with the Psychedelic Experience Agreement in their personal, psychedelic medicine use practices, as outlined below:
As representatives of the psychedelic community we choose to exemplify safe psychedelic experiences. Safety allows for depth, healing and awakening, and is a universal right for all people in psychedelic spaces. The purpose of this agreement is to clarify expectations and appropriate behavior before we have a psychedelic experience together.
1. We affirm that this agreement can only be made in a sober state, and we agree that once any medicine is taken, even if the medicine hasn’t activated yet, we will not change the agreement until we are sober again, even if we all agree we want to. We agree to not break or change this agreement even if God/The Divine/The Universe/Truth, etc tells us directly and without a doubt to change it or break it.
2. Above all, we agree to respect each others boundaries, treat each other with respect, and to keep each other safe.
3. Before we begin, we agree to complete a simple safety assessment, to be truthful about and discuss our current psychological state and life circumstances. We affirm that we are ready for the experience we’re choosing to have.
4. We agree to have a conversation around consensual touch before the medicine is taken. Touch is always consensual. Consent about something not discussed cannot be given after a medicine is imbibed. Permission is always requested and affirmed before touching. We agree that touch is never sexual in nature in a psychedelic therapy session.
5. We agree to be mindful of externalizing our inner experiences, and to be aware of our projections and transference (both positive and negative) that we may place on the experience, the facilitator or the medicine. We agree to discuss our perceptions, and to check in around feelings of safety, or sense of lack of safety, if we become anxious or paranoid.
6. We agree to keep confidentiality, and not share details of our experience with others, except in situations that require significant intervention to prevent harm, or where reporting is legally mandated, such as child or elder abuse, suicidality or self-harm.
7. We agree to have back up support in the form of a trusted emergency contact and to share the contact information with the facilitator or group. We agree to seek immediate professional support for any significant medical or mental health emergency.
8. We agree to only work with clean medicine that is tested, accurately measured, and responsibly sourced. We agree to be educated about the medicines we use and their legality.
9. We agree to only use medicines that we know are personally safe for us to use; physically, mentally, psychologically, and spiritually.
10. We agree to designate a specific location that represents the boundaries of the experience and to not leave the confines of this safe space until the completion of the experience. We agree to not bring into or do anything dangerous or harmful in the psychedelic experience space.
11. We agree that anyone imbibing a medicine will not drive until the following day and until it is safe to do so.
12. We agree to speak at least once before the psychedelic experience for intention setting, safety assessments, and preparation support, and at least once after the experience for a safety check in and integration support. If this is part of a professional service, the full cost of the entire protocol is outlined before we begin.
13. As the sitter/guide/therapist of the experience I agree to share my training and expertise verbally or through a disclosure statement and that I affirm to have adequate supervision support, training, and experience to facilitate the experience we are having safely. My fees are clearly outlined, will not change, and are in alignment with my skill, training, experience, and to similar services within my locale. I agree to only work within my scope of training and expertise, such as only doing body work if I am trained to do so, or only working with specific clinical concerns if I am trained to do so (such as trauma and PTSD and other significant mental health issues).
Thank you and Safe Travels! Many blessings to you on this sacred journey of healing and discovery.
4. PROFESSIONAL CODE OF CONDUCT
The Center for Medicinal Mindfulness is a Psychedelic Harm Prevention & Education Program, a Psychedelic Therapy Clinic, and a Training Program for individuals interested in becoming professional psychedelic therapists and guides. This is a developing profession and there are currently no uniform legal, ethical, or professional practice standards in our society. While MM only works with Cannabis sativa, ketamine, and breathwork practices, some individuals take our trainings and integrate what they learn into already established psychedelic therapy practices with other substances.
This information is provided to students and members for informed consent purposes and to disclose expected professional requirements for guides working with and associated with MM programs.
MM students receive “Certificates of Completion” to denote that they have completed a particular training. These certificates in no way denote skill level or expertise. The MM Credentialing program requires additional training, supervision and professional accountability requirements to practice professionally.
Students, members and trainees of Medicinal Mindfulness cannot represent Medicinal Mindfulness in any context, specifically in media related interviews and presentations, without the expressed written permission of Medicinal Mindfulness.
Professional members agree to abide by employee, independent contractor, or licensing agreements when representing MM professionally. MM program names are the Intellectual Property of MM and their use is covered in separate licensing agreements.
Due to the complex nature of this work, and the vast array of how these skill sets can be used, Medicinal Mindfulness is unable to regulate individual use practices that are outside the scope of our training and credentialing program. Therefore, those who are currently practicing as guides, sitters, and transpersonal facilitators in psychedelic contexts are fully responsible for the outcome of their actions.
Medicinal Mindfulness reserves the right to not work with students or potential students whose actions are not in alignment with our definitions of safe use practices. This will be discussed with students before a decision to terminate a relationship is reached.
Professional members understand that part of the mission of the Center for Medicinal Mindfulness and Psychedelic Sitters School is to uphold best practices in psychedelic therapy and the professional member agrees to uphold legal, safe, and ethical practices at all times.
Medicinal Mindfulness strongly recommends that practitioners only work within the scope of their professional skill, and to have the appropriate training outside of psychedelic medicine practices that are required to work with specific populations or professional services. For example, becoming a psychedelic psychotherapist and trauma specialist would also require training and education as a professional counselor or psychologist with a specialty in trauma resolution therapies. Working with psychedelics and massage would also require training as a massage therapist. Working with psychedelics or cannabis with yoga or breathwork would require training in yoga or breathwork practices. Competent and ethical psychedelic facilitators are expected to have the relevant training and skill sets to do the work they are called to do in the world and to abide by the ethical standards of their profession. Facilitators working outside their scope of expertise increase the risk of causing harm to others.
Practitioners are strongly encouraged to fully disclose their expertise, training and experience to their clients before conducting a transformational session. While students of Medicinal Mindfulness are not authorized to represent our program, they are encouraged to let others know about their Medicinal Mindfulness training and experience, and to refer clients interested in our services to Medicinal Mindfulness for therapy or training.
Facilitators generally have a much higher requirement than other medicine users to engage in their own self-care practices, as well as more stringent requirements for responsible medicine use.
Medicinal Mindfulness acknowledges that professional development can be established in indigenous/traditional contexts as well. As a “multi-paradigm” program, Medicinal Mindfulness recommends balancing any trainings or experience with complimentary trainings and experience. For example, spiritual practitioners are encouraged to receive psychological and clinical experience and training, and vice versa.
Facilitators are encouraged to audit their skill sets and professional requirements to determine areas that could be further developed. Competent facilitators acknowledge that it takes years and decades to be a skilled facilitator, and they take the time to grow into their professional development by practicing within appropriate settings and with clients with concerns or expectations within the facilitator’s skill level.
Group facilitation is more complex than individual facilitation and requires specific skill sets. Facilitators are encouraged to start with individual sessions, then very small groups to develop these skill sets before working with larger groups.
Medicinal Mindfulness facilitators do not have sex or sexual relationships with their clients or students, during or after their period of support or mentorship. Touch is always consensual, has a healing purpose, and only done with explicit permission from the client or student.
Ongoing professional supervision with more experienced psychedelic facilitators, as well as experienced practitioners of a practitioner’s profession is strongly encouraged. Ethical facilitators and guides participate in mentor and peer support groups. Medicinal Mindfulness trainers are available to discuss ethical concerns and considerations. Adding psychedelics to any practice greatly increases the complexity of the practice.
Professional members agree to be an MM community member in good standing, and either be working towards, or credentialed in CAPT modality if related to their work with MM.
Professional members are required to pay annual MM professional membership dues. This helps pay for the management of our leadership accountability program, as well as leadership training and ongoing mentorship.
Professional members agree to seek immediate supervision when a client/student expresses significant struggles, suicidality, self harm, harm to others, or anything required to be disclosed as a mandatory reporter.
Professional members agree to not refer students/clients outside the MM/PSS team without permission from MM supervisor. MM and PSS require certain minimum safety standards so we cannot recommend just any psychedelic community or program, even if it is legal.
Professional members agree to uphold open and affirming stance towards LGBTQIA and BIPOC members to be committed to the personal ongoing work of anti-racism.
Professional members agree to be in right relationship with psychedelic medicines and other drugs as defined in the MM Safe Community Policy.
Professional members agree to be professional, in speech, written communication, and dress at all times and understands that this is an important piece of representing a controversial and often misunderstood professional field.
Professional members agree to address conflicts in professional and appropriate ways, and at appropriate times, and not allow personal conflicts to interfere with services provided to students and clients.
Professional members understand that as a representative of Medicinal Mindfulness during the terms of their service, that they cannot provide underground sessions to clients/students (ie sessions with illegal substances), or provide referrals to underground practitioners, groups, or practices, and cannot provide sources for illegal medicines even if asked to do so. Failure to comply with this boundary will result in immediate termination of agreement with the professional member. MM also has strict referral requirements for legal psychedelic therapy experiences that are not provided by MM (Ayahuasca retreats, for example). Professional members agrees to make recommendations based on these requirements.
Professional members disclose full cost of services as much as possible prior to services rendered.
Professional members agree that the cost of service is understood by the client/student, and cost of services do not change after they are provided. Written record of agreements, in clinical notes or email correspondence is required. This includes terms of Training Scholarships or Affordable Psychedelic Therapy services.
Safe Community Agreement
email@example.com - Professional members agree that clients and students will have access to this email address in the member’s MM/PSS related program descriptions and disclosure statements so they can ask questions or express concerns related to conduct of the member. Credentialed members are required to include this in their private practice disclosure statement with language regarding community accountability.
This email is sent directly to an MM non-profit board member and head of our Safe Community Committee. This email is also available to professional members to report concerns regarding MM owners, supervisor, peers, sponsors, allies, and any team members.
This is offered in the spirit of safety and accountability. When in doubt, just ask. The goal of MM is to promote reconciliation, learning, growth, and appropriate professional boundaries. A process initiated through the Safe Community Policy may include mediated conversations to address concerns, and professional members agrees to be proactively engaged in this process. Professional members and MM acknowledge that this process is currently under development and will be disclosed at each iteration through updates in the MM Safe Community Policy. Violations of code of conduct and agreement may be reviewed by the Safe Community Committee of the MM non-profit to determine best path towards resolution.
No Secrets Between Professional Members and the MM/PSS Teams
Professional members agree to bring any questions, concerns, or anything that seems relevant that is disclosed by a student, client, or member to the relevant MM/PSS leadership teams, or supervisors in compliance with all confidentiality policies. Professional members acknowledge that they are in a confidential group supervision by being on the training team, or clinical team, and will disclose this to students/clients if asked. Members agree to engage in this process in a non-judgmental way, and agrees to be part of a fact finding process if requested. This protects our community from sometimes diﬃcult to discern mental health concerns that may require additional support, or may need to be addressed to ensure the safety of the student and the safety of the community. Clients in our clinic are protected by HIPAA. Clinicians will work with MM in situations that require mandatory reporting.
This version (v6) of the Safe Community Policy includes updated language and new policies for professional facilitators, team members, and employees of Medicinal Mindfulness. Moving forward, the management of this policy is shifting to the MM non-profit. Community Governance should be a community affair, not a business policy.
MM related companies and their representatives agree to abide by this and other relevant codes of conduct.
The Center for Medicinal Mindfulness has recently hired an interim Executive Director for the MM Non-Profit program. The governance structures for our community will be spearheaded by the non-profit. A governance update should be published by mid-2021.
In the meantime, any member can make recommendations for changes or upgrades to this policy by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. These will be reviewed by the MM non-profit board of directors and executive director. This board includes Daniel McQueen, Dr. Carla Clements, and Dr. Travis Cox. Specific questions or concerns will be addressed through a committee determined process.
Our program is currently researching conflict resolution, council meeting protocols, restorative justice, and mediation strategies that are in alignment with the needs of psychedelic communities.
Decisions to increase the board size and to create a community membership leadership council will also be forthcoming.
Anyone with experience in community governance is strongly encouraged to contact the leadership team of MM to support our emerging governance program. We believe this conversation is centrally important to the ongoing evolution of psychedelic communities and our ability to contribute beneficially to our society.
6. FUTURE POSSIBILITIES-CONCLUSION
The MM community exists within a new paradigm, one which is not very well understood. Bringing psychedelic medicine practices into a community container like the Center for Medicinal mindfulness is a very big deal. We are exploring new ways of being in the world, and offering these practices to others. It is important to take this work seriously as the implications of our successes and failures can be significant and life changing on a societal scale. Psychedelics have an established history of changing the course of the world. We are required to actively consider that ethical questions that come with this level of responsibility.
Each member of MM is invited to be an active participant in this new consensus. We each have an important part to play in important decisions ahead, not all of which are clearly determinable, but are instead complex, ambiguous, and with significant consequences.
This document is provided to continue the discussion of what it means to individually thrive within a safe and sustainable psychedelic community structure while really big events are happening in the world. Psychedelic medicines have a lot to offer our society and our planet, but our communities are still learning how to grow into the grand possibilities created by these medicines. Big visions require a lot of support and a solid foundation to be successfully implemented. This is the purpose of this policy, to provide this foundation and support. We must considerer the larger context of our work, and acknowledge that we don’t exist within a vacuum, but rather a complex global ecosystem that is struggling greatly. What agreements are required to navigate these big waves successfully, together? This is one of the most important questions we must answer as a community. Psychedelics just won’t be of much use otherwise.