Are Psychedelics Legal in Washington DC?

By Phil Dubley Fact-Checked By Tripsitter Legal Team · Last Updated: January 11, 2024
Last Updated: January 11, 2024

Although little is said about their great medicinal potential, psychedelics are widely known for their mind-altering effects. They’re used both recreationally and for spiritual growth and development.

In addition, psychedelics have been studied extensively for their ability to treat mental health conditions, including existential anxiety in terminal illness, depression, PTSD, addiction, and more.

They’ve also shown promise as a future treatment for cluster headaches and to improve problem-solving and creativity.

In this article, we’ll delve deep into the world of psychedelics — we’ll talk about their different uses, regulations, and future in Washington, DC.

Are Magic Mushrooms Legal in Washington, DC?

Magic mushrooms are illegal but decriminalized in Washington, DC.

On March 15, 2021, Initiative 81 (also known as the Entheogenic Plant and Mushroom Policy Act) went into effect. This law decriminalizes natural psychedelics, including magic mushrooms.

It’s essential to clarify that this measure does not legalize mushrooms. It only makes surveillance and prosecution a low priority for state law.

It is essential to know that magic mushroom spores are legal in almost every state. And Washington is not left out.

Magic Mushroom Laws In the United States

Magic mushrooms are most likely to be legalized or decriminalized in the United States first. A few places have already moved to decriminalize them, such as the state of Oregon and a few municipalities in California and Colorado.

Here’s an up-to-date map of the legal status of magic mushrooms in the United States:

Do Magic Mushrooms Grow Wild in Washington?

A few species of magic mushrooms can grow naturally in Washington, DC, and the surrounding area.

Psilocybe azurescens, the most potent psilocybe mushrooms currently known, is one of the most common species in Washington, DC. They contain up to 1.8% psilocybin and 0.5% psilocin when dry.

Is LSD Legal in Washington, DC?

LSD (lysergic acid diethylamide) is not legal in Washington, DC, nor is it in any other US state.

Acid is a Schedule I Controlled Substance, like MDMA and heroin. However, recently there have been many petitions in Washington State to decriminalize minor possession.

We note that Washington is one of the states easing penalties for possessing small amounts of these substances.

For the time being, possession and trade of LSD could result in severe fines and even prison sentences.

Is MDMA Legal in Washington, DC?

No. MDMA (ecstasy) is illegal in the State of Washington, DC.

In addition, it is a Schedule I Controlled Substance in the US and is considered a dangerous drug.

However, various studies have shown that MDMA could complement psychotherapy and help combat post-traumatic stress. The FDA is on the brink of approving MDMA for the treatment of PTSD. When this happens, we’ll likely see clinics and psychiatrists start to use this substance in their practice.

MDMA is unlikely to become legalized or decriminalized for the general public anytime soon.

Is Ketamine Legal in Washington, DC?

Ketamine is illegal for recreational use throughout the US.

However, it’s legal for medical use with a doctor’s prescription. Therapeutically, ketamine is used for treating depression, PTSD, and existential anxiety.

In 2019, Janssen Pharmaceuticals Ketamine drug was approved to treat patients with treatment-resistant depression. A year later, the second approval was made, which allowed all physicians to prescribe the medicine to patients with severe depression.

Though again, ketamine is illegal worldwide for recreational use, and there is no indication of decriminalization, let alone legalization for use by the general public.

Legal Psychoactive Substances in Washington DC

Marijuana became legal in Washington, DC, in 2014.

This includes the newer delta 8 THC and delta 10 THC, as well as conventional marijuana, CBD, and delta 9 THC products.

Other legal psychoactive plants in Washington, DC, include kratom, kava, kanna, and salvia.

What’s the Difference Between Legalization & Decriminalization

Legalization and decriminalization are two terms that may generate some confusion. Crudely breaking it down, legalization means there are no penalties for a specific activity.

On the other hand, decriminalization means the penalties are significantly reduced but not completely removed.

Key Takeaways: What’s the Future of Psychedelics in Washington, DC?

The trend towards decriminalization and then the legalization of psychoactive substances and psychedelic drugs in the US is very clear and has had significant momentum in recent years.

Magic mushrooms are already decriminalized in the state, a significant breakthrough.

That said, there’s still a lot of work to do. Substances such as LSD and MDMA carry significant therapeutic potential, and we think the laws should become laxer regarding these. We hope that’s what happens next in Washington, DC, one of the first states to decriminalize mushrooms.