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KMS Bylaws and Mission Statement

PDF version of the Ketegaunseebee Bylaws and Mission statement are available here.

Goal of the Ketegaunseebee Medzin Society

It is the goal of the Ketegaunseebee Medzin Society to protect and ensure the unimpeded access of our people to the benefits of the cannabis plant and all other medicine plants. We do this by acknowledging and adopting our historical governance structures and policies of our ancestors. This means adopting and using the clan system, honouring our Elders, and ensuring the safety and education of our children is paramount to all our members. We must remember our past so we can act accordingly today and for the future. It is by governing ourselves using our own governance structures that we honour our ancestors and best prepare the way for the faces yet to come.

The first Biannual Meeting of the Ketegaunseebee Medzin Society will be on Saturday, January 18th, 2020 at 10am, location TBD.

Basis of Unity for the Ketegaunseebee Medzin Society

In consequence of our understanding of the customs and conventions of our ancestors and of the history of our people, the members of the Ketegaunseebee Medzin Society agree that:

  1. No plant, animal or person is “illegal” under the customs and conventions of the Ojibwe people. The concept of one human prohibiting another from accessing a part of creation is foreign to us.
  2. The Ojibwe people are a free and sovereign people with the right to individual and collective self-determination, including the development of a self-supporting, self-regulated economy outside of the system of the British Crown and its Canadian government.
  3. Ojibwe people are allies, and not subjects of the British Crown and its Canadian government. Because we are a free and sovereign people, we do not pay or collect tax to, or for the Canadian government, the British Crown, or anyone else.
  4. The way our system of governance works is that our leaders serve our people, and express the common consensus of the people. In the consensus decision making process of our people, all are equal, and all have a voice that must be taken into account when making collective decisions. As a society, we meet regularly at pre-arranged times in meetings that are open to all of our members. 
  5. We have inherent individual and collective rights as free and sovereign Ojibwe people to consume, cultivate, process, utilize, and trade or exchange any part of creation in our territory for our own sustenance and benefit, as long as we do it in a way that does not harm others.
  6. Our individual and collective rights are enshrined in the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People and are further recognized and affirmed in the Royal Proclamation of 1763, the Indians’ Protection Bill of 1850, the 1854 Rowan Proclamation, as well as Sections 25 and 35 of the Canadian Constitution.
  7. Ojibwe people have the inherent sovereign right to use natural medicines to treat ourselves, and the inherent sovereign responsibility to provide medicines to those who need them. Ojibwe people have the sovereign right to grow, process, and sell cannabis according to the customs and traditions of our people. This includes Nation-to-Nation trading relationships with other Indigenous and non-Indigenous Nations.
  8. The Governance structures of the Crown in right of Canada – including their Federal, Provincial, Municipal, and Indian Act (Band Council) systems – have no more right to tax and regulate cucumbers grown and sold in Ketegaunseebee then they do cannabis grown and sold in Ketegaunseebee. Ketegaunseebee is sovereign unceded land belonging to the original people, and has long sold the products of its gardens to non-Indigenous people passing through the territory.

Mission Statement

 The Ketegaunseebee Medzin Society shall:

  1. Advocate for the interests of the members of the Ketegaunseebee Medzin Society who grow, sell, and consume cannabis products.
  2. Implement a process of self-regulation of the cannabis industry in Ketegaunseebee  through the application of Ojibwe custom and convention that will: uphold Ojibwe self-determination, protect minors, combat addiction, keep out organized crime, provide for quality control and safe handling and consistency of cannabis, educate consumers, regulate prices, ensure fair standards of wages and benefits to workers, and otherwise promote the public health and social well being of the Ojibwe people.
  3. Advocate and promote the rights of all Ojibwe people to access cannabis and to build an “above ground” self-regulated industry to grow, process, transport, retail, and trade cannabis on a nation-to-nation basis. This advocacy may be done through means including, but not limited to, workshops, publications, advertisements, and public relations campaigns. 
  4. Encourage the diversification of the Ojibwe cannabis industry into a broader “green economy” using hemp and cannabis byproducts to produce building materials, paper, clothing, health foods, etc. in such a manner as to bring health and prosperity to the Ojibwe people.
  5. Defend and build political and legal support for any Ojibwe who face criminalization or state sanctioned targeting for participating in the Indigenous cannabis industry. 
  6. The association shall create a mechanism whereby a portion of the revenue made through the cannabis industry will be apportioned to economic, social and cultural programs that improve the lives and support the identity and values of Ojibwe people. 

Bylaws of the Ketagaunseebee Medzin Society

  1. Membership
    1. The Ketagaunseebee Medzin Society (KMS) is an organization comprised of members of the Ojibwe Nation who are involved in the growing, processing, transporting, sale, and consumption of cannabis products in the Ketagaunseebee territory.
    2. Any member of the Ojibwe person who grows, sells, or consumes cannabis products, and who agrees to uphold the mission statement, bylaws, and Community Standards of the KMS, and who pays a yearly $20 membership fee will be accepted as a member of the association. 
    3. A membership card will be issued to each member of the KMS with their name, and proof of membership listed on it. 
    4. Members of the KMS are entitled to a 10% discount on personal purchases at participating KMS businesses.
  2. Membership Groups
    1. Members of the KMS join one of five bodies based upon their involvement in the cannabis industry and personal knowledge base. These five groups are: growers (anyone involved in any stage of the growing or manufacturing of cannabis); retailers (anyone involved in selling cannabis directly to consumers); consumers (members of the Ojibwe Nation who consume cannabis products); elders (grandparents who provide advice and direction concerning the customs and conventions of the Ojibwe); medicine people (Ojibwe people trained in traditional medicinal practice who provide advice and direction concerning the customs and conventions of the Ojibwe medicines). 
  3. 3.0 Biannual Gathering 
    1. The highest decision making body of the KMS is its Biannual Gathering, which is a meeting of all members held twice a year.
    2. Biannual Gathering meetings of the KMS occur twice yearly, on the third Saturday of January and third Saturday of August.
    3. Meetings shall begin at 10am on Saturday morning.
    4. After welcoming and introductions, the Biannual Gathering shall divide into its five component parts (growers, retailers, consumers, elders, and medicine people).
    5. Each group will meet by itself to discuss its concerns and issues. 
    6. Once it has met and discussed within its group, each group will pick spokespeople to reflect the general positions and perspectives held by each of the five groups.
    7. When the Biannual Gathering reunites, each of the five groups shall sit together so they may council together to see if they have consensus on proposals made by the other groups.
  4. Making Decisions
    1. Business is advanced by one of the five groups coming to an internal agreement to make a specific resolution – ie: “the KMS should pass such and such a resolution or carry out such and such an action” – and presenting it to the other groups to have them discuss it. Each group seeks to arrive at a consensus to either reject, accept or modify the proposal and lets the group which proposed the initiative know whether they accept, reject, or have modified the proposal. 
    2. If there is disagreement on the proposal, the groups discussing the proposal may send the proposal back to the originating group with proposed modifications. 
    3. If the same matter is passed back and forth between the groups and no consensus is reached, then the matter shall be referred to the next meeting. If a matter has been brought up at three consecutive meetings and has not been resolved, then the matter shall be deemed closed and shall not be discussed again.
    4. Motions that are agreed upon with the consensus of all five groups are written down and recorded as official decisions of the KMS by the KMS secretary and shall be published on the KMS’s website. 
  5. Executive committee
    1. At its founding meeting on January 18, 2020, the KMS shall choose an executive committee made up of a spokesperson, a treasurer, a secretary, as well as one representative from each membership group (a total of 8 members)
    2. The terms of the executive members is for a one year period.
    3. The KMS as a whole must come to consensus on who will be chosen as spokesperson, treasurer, and secretary. The group representatives to the executive are chosen by the consensus of each group (retailers, growers, consumers, elders, and medicine people) and is ratified by consensus of the other groups.
    4. The role of the executive is to operate the affairs of the association in between KMS quarterly meetings.
    5. The spokesperson speaks on behalf of the association publicly and is responsible for external communications.
    6. The treasurer is responsible for the group’s finances.
    7. The secretary is responsible for keeping minutes of executive and general assembly meetings, keeping track of membership, and handling internal communications amongst the membership.
    8. The other three executive members represent the groups that selected them and may assist the spokesperson, treasurer, and secretary as necessary, or take on  other areas of responsibility. 
    9. Executive members are recallable by the members of the group that placed them on the executive. They may be removed from their position and replaced by the group that chose them at any of the Biannual Gatherings of the KMS.
    10. The executive committee shall produce a proposed agenda, and provide a written report of the executive’s activities on behalf of the KMS no less than three weeks before each Biannual Gathering.
    11. The executive is collectively responsible for organizing the Biannual Gathering meeting and communicating the decisions made to the membership.
  6. 6.0 Commissions & Committees
    1. At its Biannual Gatherings the KMS may create commissions and committees as necessary to fulfil its mandate. These bodies may include:
      1. Bodies created from the membership of growers, retailers, consumer, elders, and medicine people of the Association
      2. A trustee body to oversee the finances of the Community Contribution Fund;
      3. An Education and Skills development committee to build capacity within and outside the KMS.
      4. An arms length compliance body / Ombudsperson to handle and investigate complaints. The Ombudsperson shall serve as a non-decision making member of the executive and shall be the person to whom all complaints concerning KMS members or their businesses shall referred to. 
  7. 7.0 Removal from Association
    1. The following are grounds for removal from the association:
      1. Involvement within the cannabis industry on the territory of the Ojibwe Nation in violation of the KMS approved document  “KMS Community Standards for the growing, selling, or consumption of cannabis in Ketegaunseebee.”
    2. The executive of the association has the right to suspend a member of the association for violation of the Community Standards document. That suspension may be dismissed, altered or confirmed into a removal from the Association at the next Biannual Gathering meeting. 
  8. Modification of bylaws and principles
    1. The bylaws and statement of principles of the KMS may be modified with the consensus agreement of all five bodies of the KMS as long as the notice of such change is provided to the membership with a two weeks notice before the Biannual Gathering meeting.
  9. Communications
    1. The Executive shall maintain a communications infrastructure for the Association that will include:
      1. An internal email list for all members
      2. A Facebook discussion group
      3. A website to share information with the public and the group membership
      4. A phone list of all members

KMS Community Standards

  1. General
    1. These community standards on the safe operation of cannabis dispensaries have been adopted by the members of the KMS to protect the people of Ketegaunseebee and our visitors.
    2. The community standards document is a “living document” that may be altered through the decision making process of the KMS at one of its biannual meetings.
  2. Youth Protection
    1. Cannabis Dispensaries owners in Ketegaunseebee who belong to the KMS undertake to accept the following regulations concerning youth access to cannabis.
    2. Don’t sell to those under 19. 
    3. ID people looking under 25.
    4. Don’t market products to a youth market.
  3. Health and Safety
    1. All products sold by members of the KMS on the Territory of the Ojibwe Nation must be
      1. Tested for its potency.
      2. Visually inspected to ensure that they are not moldy.
      3. Packaged in childproof containers.
      4. When handling cannabis products, all employees should wear gloves and take steps not to mix different types of cannabis products together.  
  4. Customer info
    1. All retailers belonging to the KMS must prominently display a KMS made sign in their business indicating that they belong to the association and follow its Community Standards.
    2. All retailers must hold their customer data in a secure place.
  5. Complaints
    1. Any and all complaints about the conduct of a member of the KMS shall be referred to the KMS executive or the KMS Ombudsperson where the matter shall be addressed.
  6. Labelling of product
    1. Wherever possible, cannabis products should be labeled as to how they were grown, ie. as Hydroponics, Indoor, Outdoor, Organic, etc.
  7. Security
    1. Shops undertake to keep their premises safe, and the community as a whole.

Proposed Community Contribution Fund

  1. The KMS shall create a Community Contribution Fund to ensure that the cannabis industry of the Ojibwe Nation contributes to the needs of the people. 
  2. The Community Contribution Fund shall be managed by five trustees selected by the KMS at one of its biannual meetings. Each of the three trustees shall be chosen from a different group (retailers, growers, consumers, elders and medicine people) and together they are responsible for the operation of the fund.
  3. The fund shall receive payment in the following ways.
    1. A common childproof “exit bag” bearing the logo of the KMS and information concerning the safe use of medicinal cannabis shall be utilized by all retail outlets that are members of the KMS. 
      1. All customers at retail outlets belonging to the KMS are required to purchase an exit bag in order to take their purchased products home.
      2. Each store shall purchase the bags in bulk from the KMS at their cost of production of $___
      3. Each exit bag shall be sold to customers at a cost $  __
      4. The profit made on the sales of exit bags to customers shall be donated to the community contribution fund.
      5. Customers need only buy one exit bag as long as they re-use it and bring it back to the store. If they forget or lose their bag, they must purchase a new bag along with their product. 
    2. The fund will also accept voluntary donations from other sources as they are made. 
  4. The trustees of the Community Contribution Fund shall make a biannual report of all expenditures to the meetings of the KMS which shall be published on the KMS website to ensure accountability. 

Proposal for Ombudsperson Position in the KMS

Proposal: That the following text describing the position of Ombudsperson be added to the bylaws of the KMS for the purposes of enhancing the safety and security of the Ojibwe cannabis industry. 

Role and duties of the KMS Ombudsperson

  1. The KMS Ombudsperson provides an independent, impartial and confidential process through which Ojibwe people and the general public may find assistance and advice in the just, fair and equitable resolution of concerns related to the Ojibwe cannabis industry. 
  2. The role of the Ombudsperson is to represent the interests of the Ojibwe people and the general public by investigating and addressing complaints regarding public safety, maladministration, or the violation of rights within the Ojibwe cannabis industry.
  3. The duties of the Ombudsperson are to investigate complaints and attempt to resolve them, usually through recommendations or mediation between the affected parties. 
  4. The Ombudsperson is accountable to and appointed by the biannual meetings of the KMS. 
  5. The Ombudsperson may also make recommendations when trends, patterns, policies or procedures of the KMS generate concerns or conflicts, and promotes discussion on community wide concerns.
  6. The Ombudsperson shall carry out the responsibilities of the office independently of the executive and administrative bodies of the KMS.
  7. The contact information (email, phone number and website) of the KMS Ombudsperson shall be announced and made public on the website and public materials produced by the KMS. 
  8. Any complaints about the Ojibwe cannabis industry by either Ojibwe Nation members or members of the general Canadian public shall be directed to the KMS Ombudsperson. 
    1. The method for recording a complaint shall be to fill out a form on the KMS website identifying the nature of the complaint, a suggestions for how the complaint could be resolved, and their contact information.
    2. Once the Ombudsperson is notified of the complaint, the Ombudsperson shall consider the complaint and make an initial investigation to determine if the complaint is of a serious nature. 
    3. If the Ombudsperson considers the complaint to be of a serious enough nature as to require further investigation, then the Ombudsperson shall interview the complainant and the respondents to the complaint, and produce a report detailing their findings and recommendations for solutions to the complaint. 
    4. A copy of this report (with the identity of the complainant redacted) shall be forwarded to the KMS Executive who may take action to address it.
    5. Any member of the Executive who is a party to the complaint shall declare a conflict of interest and not take part in the discussion as to how to proceed. 
    6. The Executive may choose to refer the problem and its solution to another body such as for example: Chief and Council, an outside police force, or another Ojibwe organization or institution.
    7. Before each Biannual meeting, the Ombudsperson shall produce an incident report outlining all of the complaints they have received over the last quarter, as well as a report of all investigations carried out by the Ombudsperson.
  9. Services provided by the Ombudsperson are founded on a number of general principles including independence, impartiality, confidentiality, informality, and accessibility. Fairness in decisions shall be the special concern of the Ombudsperson. Among other things, that means that the Ombudsperson shall make decisions and recommendations:
    1. with reasonable promptness;
    2. in accordance with applicable policies and procedures;
    3. taking into account all relevant information.
  10. Jurisdiction 
    1. The Office of the Ombudsperson is not meant to replace established channels of assistance but may be used if an individual needs assistance in identifying where to go, would prefer to discuss a problem with a neutral party, or has already gone through established channels without satisfaction. 
    2. The Ombudsperson shall have no actual authority to impose remedies or sanctions, or to enforce any policy, rule or procedure. They may, however, make recommendations for resolving concerns or improving policies, rules or procedures which may be implemented by the various bodies of the KMS.
    3. The Office of the Ombudsperson shall not deal with concerns from any individuals who do not present that concern personally. Third parties attempting to initiate action on behalf of another individual shall be informed of this policy and instructed to persuade the injured party to contact the Ombudsperson directly. 
    4. The Ombudsperson acts solely in an advisory or intermediary role and does not make or alter KMS policy.