WASHINGTON, D.C.-President Joe Biden signed legislation on Friday that will facilitate cannabis research and promote the creation of pharmaceuticals derived from the plant.
Bipartisan advocates for the Medical cannabis and Cannabidiol Research Expansion Act expressed hope that other cannabis-related initiatives in Congress’ lame-duck session would follow suit.
The co-chairs of the Congressional Cannabis Caucus, Reps. Earl Blumenauer, D-Ore., Barbara Lee, D-Calif., David Joyce, R-Ohio, and Brian Mast, R-Fla., said in a statement: “We celebrate the enactment of this critical and long-overdue legislation, and we know there is much more to do to remedy the ongoing harms of the failed war on drugs.” “Our caucus will keep fighting to reinvent the federal government’s approach to cannabis and enact new reforms,” the statement reads.
Congressmen are currently negotiating to pass a bill that would permit legal cannabis firms to use banking services while also aiding individuals who have been most negatively affected by the drug war.
With the existing federally licensed source of cannabis being the University of Mississippi, the new regulation would enable researchers to access cannabis samples from other places.
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services would also be required to conduct a study on the advantages and disadvantages of cannabis, including how it affects people’s ability to operate a motor vehicle.
Other requirements include allowing doctors to discuss cannabis and CBD weed with patients and requiring the federal Drug Enforcement Agency to determine whether there is enough cannabis available for research.
The press release stated that “research is fundamental for the future of cannabis legislation.” Research is necessary to learn more about the therapeutic advantages of cannabis, which could aid millions of Americans suffering from conditions including chronic pain, PTSD, multiple sclerosis, anxiety disorders, and more.
The law does not alter cannabis’s classification as a Schedule 1 substance, which Biden requested officials to review in October when he pardoned people convicted only of federal cannabis possession offenses.
A bill that was filed this week in the Senate would examine federal regulations for cannabis that has been decriminalized.