Public Speaking is Important. Here is how to do it!

Code of Conduct

“Don’t raise your voice, improve your argument.” – Desmund Tutu

Long before we defeated Measure W last summer, we realized that the pitch-and-forks approach to public discourse just simply doesn’t work, especially when it comes to cannabis. Carving a community-minded path, where collaboration and education are at the helm of the  conversation, has served us much better and allowed us the kind of recognition among our community leaders that we deserve and need in order to be effective advocates.

So it is with the same respect we are beginning to garner from the most ardent members of the opposition, that we ask you to address our elected officials and members of the public at any public meeting. We ask that you join us in upholding the principles of grace, courage and civility:

  • Leave your fear at home: One of the products of prohibition has been fear — Fear to speak out, fear to be proud of our work, and fear of being misunderstood. But trust us when we say the tides have changed. It’s time to come out of the closet and begin painting a picture of the cannabis industry that is rooted in family, community and love for the environment and our craft. It’s time to collaborate on our collective future, and part of that is being able to be sincere with the our elected officials.
  • Respect!: We speak with the same kind of respect we hope others would give to us. We are farmers, patients, parents, business owners, entrepreneurs, and we aim to meet all the same kind of folk in different industries and areas of concern.
  • Be succinct and clear with your message: Elected officials respond to organized thoughts. Be ready to speak to them about what you care about most, but be clear and succinct. Know your subject well. Be respectful of their time. Try to use scientific research and data to back any claims. Comments should be concise and focused. Comments should identify specifics (with supporting evidence and facts). Site references.
  • Community sensitivity: Elected officials, community leaders and fellow residents may not always agree with us, but we allow everyone their fair say on the impact cannabis makes in their lives, even our opposition.
  • Maintain discipline and a spirit of cooperation: If we are here to build bridges and cultivate a balance between regulation, business and advocacy, we need everyone at the table. Be willing to listen to their concerns also, and thank them for the exchange of opinions and information.
  • Advocate for the Whole Industry, not just for your personal or business interests. If the industry as a whole succeeds, you succeed.
  • Public Speaking: When participating in a public forum, speaking to community members, attending industry events or representing the Alliance in any way, please check in with our staff to ensure your talking points and general messaging are unified with our mission of Protecting Public Safety, Protecting the Environment, and creating Socio Economic Vitality.
  • Provide solutions, not just the problem
  • No cheering, clapping, yelling directly at the BOS or someone with opposing views
  • No signs or placards
  • Wear Green!
  • Use Discretion: When speaking with anyone regarding personal or business information, do not divulge details that are not yours to share.
  • Always do your Best!