Micah Haskell-Hoehl is a dedicated federal advocate with decades of experience in mental health and criminal-legal system policy and a passion for psychedelic and harm reduction issues that goes back even farther. He founded HEAL Organization to focus full time on federal psychedelic policy issues. Micah has been in long-term recovery for substance use since 2013 and believes deeply in the boundless healing potential of psychedelics and entheogens. His initial experiences over 20 years ago with unregulated ecstasy were the catalyst that finally got him out of two-year-long depression. He also helped launch Pittsburgh’s DanceSafe chapter, FLOWER, in 1999-2000.
Prior to founding HEAL, Micah worked in federal policy at Vera Institute of Justice and the American Psychological Association, delivering on behalf of key organizational goals. In these roles he successfully wrote and introduced federal legislation; secured witness testimony at high profile congressional hearings; and gained the inclusion of language in numerous federal bills and multiple federal statutes. He also has organized and spoken at highly successful, standing-room-only congressional events on mental health and criminal justice, policing in America, and the nation’s hidden rural jail crisis.
Micah grew up in Pittsburgh, attending the public school system there. This exposed him at a young age to the racial and economic inequities created and perpetuated by America’s public and private institutions. He witnessed gang violence in the heyday of the Bloods and Crips; vicious, race-based attacks by white students on Black students; schools so starved of resources they lacked toilet paper; and far too many children’s futures thrown away. These experiences, coupled to the philosophy of tikkun olam, have motivated him at every step of his personal and professional life.
His most important work is as partner to his spouse, Gracy, and father to their children, Jonah and Rose.