Audrey Hill is a Mohawk grandmother from the Turtle clan. Here she provides her thoughts about the cannabis industry at Six Nations.
The following is a video of the presentation of the Six Nations Cannabis Survey results made by Aaron Sault of Green Health for 6.
Thursday, January 25, 2018.
OHSWEKEN (Six Nations) – On Sunday, January 28th, 2018, members of the Six Nations community near Brantford will gather to discuss the results of a recent survey about cannabis use and regulation on their territory. The Six Nations Medical Cannabis Survey ran from December 4th to 31st, 2017, and drew 731 respondent submissions. Jeff Hawk and Aaron Sault of Green Health for Six, the cannabis dispensary that commissioned the survey to get public input, will present the results. Following the presentation, an open mic will be available for members of the community and the wider public to ask questions and voice their opinions, concerns and testimonials.
WHO: Green Health for Six owners, Six Nations community and wider public
WHAT: Meeting to discuss cannabis survey results and what they mean for community health, well-being and sovereignty.
WHERE: Yogi’s Barn – 2318 Chiefswood Rd. Oswheken (at Chiefswood & 6th Line)
WHY: A majority of respondents use and view cannabis as a medicine that should be controlled by traditional medicine people and cannabis retailers. However, the Six Nations police and Elected Band Council, are working to shut down dispensaries.
VISUALS: People seated as audience, individuals and families standing, speaking, presenting slides, including community members ranging in ages from their 20s to 80s, including cannabis users living with disabilities, cancer survivors, workers and elders managing chronic pain, parents and business owners.
For more information:
Jeff Hawk – mobile: 519-865-6432 / Aaron Sault – mobile: 226-938-1707
A Timeline of Six Nations Cannabis Dispensaries
Since Prime Minister Justin Trudeau came to office in 2015 and pledged to legalize recreational cannabis by July 2018, several Indigenous dispensaries have opened shops on Six Nations Territory, with differing levels of openness to the public. Below is a timeline of events.
Spring 2017 – Medixinal Dispensary opens on Brant County Hwy 54, but does not openly publicize its existence.
June 2017 – Paradise Gardens Hydroponics addresses the Six Nations Elected Council (SNEC). Members of the National Indigenous Medical Cannabis Association came to speak but were not allowed to address Council.
July 4, 2017 – SNEC releases an official Statement declaring cannabis sales illegal at Six Nations, unless issued under an Ontario government licence, and received with a doctor issued prescription.
July 2017 – Six Nations Police raids Medixinal Dispensary. The owners cease operation.
August 2017 – Mohawk Medicine, a health and wellness centre on Sour Spring Road opens, including cannabis among their medicinal herbs.
August 2017 – Jeff Hawk opens Green Health for Six at the same location as Medixinal.
August 2017 – SNEC releases the results of its community survey (339 respondents) with the following:
Q. 4: Would you like to see Methadone Clinics on Six Nations?
YES: 37.31% NO: 62.69%
Q. 5: Should Six Nations get involved in medical cannabis?
YES: 51% NO: 24.5% I’M NOT SURE/NEED MORE INFO: 24.5%
October 2017 – Jeff Hawk meets with the New Directions Group, the SNEC Health Agency providing addictions services and responsible for wellness promotion. NDG agreed to a second meeting to foster education but failed to follow up.
October 2017 – Ontario Government funded Methadone Treatment Clinic opens at Six Nations offering addictions services and pharmacy.
October 21, 2017 – A public meeting, “Cannabis: an Indigenous Perspective” is booked to take place at the Six Nations Bingo Hall. SNEC bars organizers and participants from using the hall, and forcing them to meet in the parking lot.
November 16, 2017 – Six Nations Police raid Mohawk Medicine, arresting and charging four people. They confiscate cash and cannabis.
December 4-31, 2017 – Green Health for Six runs its Six Nations Medicinal Cannabis Survey, mailing 2300 copies to households, running the survey in both local papers, and making the survey available online.
January 13, 2018 – Initial results of the Six Nations Cannabis Survey (731 respondents) are published online, on the Green Health for Six website.
January 16, 2018 – Six Nations Police raid Green Health for Six Dispensary, arresting and charging owner Jeff Hawk and four patrons, seizing cash and confiscating cannabis.
January 28, 2018 – Public Event discussing survey results to take place at Yogi’s Barn from 1 to 4pm. Facebook Link.
For media interviews and more information:
The initial results are now in for the Six Nations Medical Cannabis Survey. The survey was conducted between December 4th, 2017 and Dec 31st 2017.
A full written report concerning survey results will be made available at the January 28th Community Meeting at Yogi’s Barn from 1pm-4pm, hosted by Green Health for Six.
All graphs below were generated by Google Forms based on the data received from 731 respondents to the survey. Note that not all respondents answered all questions, and so the number of responses to each question varies.
75.7% of respondents stated that they identified as Onkwehon:we (Belonging to a clan and nation of the Haudenosaunee/Iroquois people). 31.9% indicated that they identify themselves as Status Indians (Recognized by the Government of Canada as an Indian). 7.4% identify themselves as Canadian citizens and 0.8% defined themselves as “other.”
56.4% of survey respondents identified themselves as male, 43.5 as female, and 0.1% as other.
88.4% of respondents indicated that they have previously consumed cannabis. 5.2% of respondents indicated that they have never consumed cannabis. 6.3% of respondents preferred not to say.
Pain relief and stress (65.9%) were tied for first place as the two largest reasons as to why respondents use cannabis for medical reasons. Depression came next at 37.5%, migraines at 33.3%, Insomnia at 30.8, loss of appetite at 29.3%, fatigue at 24.1%, nausea at 20.1%.
72% of respondents use cannabis daily. 9.4% use it weekly, 3.7% monthly, 1.8% yearly, and 1.5% prefer not to disclose their cannabis use.
95.1% of respondents consider cannabis to be a medicine. Only 1.7% said that it wasn’t a medicine, and 3.2% said they weren’t sure.
89.7% of the respondents said that cannabis is a plant compatible with indigenous medicine. 1.7% said it wasn’t compatible, and 7.5% said they weren’t sure.
A majority of respondents – 53.6% – think that cannabis consumption should be “regulated” by traditional medicine people and according to Haudenosaunee custom. 28.2% said the industry should be regulated by an association of Indigenous cannabis retailers. Only 4.4% said they thought cannabis consumption should be regulated by the Six Nations Confederacy Council, and an even smaller number of 3.1% thought that the Six Nations elected council should have a say. The smallest number of respondents, 1.6% felt that cannabis at Six Nations should be regulated by the Province of Ontario and the Government of Canada.
A comparatively large number of people 21.8% weren’t sure how it should be regulated. Many respondents indicated on their surveys that they wanted a combination of medicine people and retailers to regulate the industry.
94.9% of respondents believe that adults wishing to purchase cannabis for medical purposes. 1.5% said it shouldn’t be made available, and 3.6% weren’t sure.
86.4% of respondents think that adults wishing to purchase cannabis for recreational purposes should be able to access it on reserve. 6.6% said it shouldn’t be made available, and 7% weren’t sure.
96.5% of respondents indicated that they believe that Six Nations people have the sovereign right determine their own path and choices regarding cannabis. 1.8% said Maybe, and 1.7% said no.
77.1% of survey respondents wanted more information, and 22.9% said no.