Veterans’ Organizations Join the Push To Reschedule Cannabis

( – Last summer, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) issued its recommendation that the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) ease up on federal restrictions on marijuana. Many states have approved cannabis for recreational use, but the federal government still classifies it as a Schedule 1 drug, and HHS has recommended lowering it to a Schedule 3. Several veterans’ organizations have also joined the call to make this happen.

In a letter first obtained and reported by NBC News, veterans’ groups joined forces and asked the Department of Justice to act quickly. In the correspondence, the groups implored that the men and women who serve our country “face difficult physical and mental challenges upon returning home,” and marijuana should be available as a treatment option.

The veterans’ groups that tied their names to the letter include AMVETS, the Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America, the American GI Forum, the Blinded Veterans Association, the American Legion, and the Minority Veterans of America.

In addition to the veterans’ organizations, the Law Enforcement Leaders To Reduce Crime & Incarceration (LEL) also wrote a letter to President Joe Biden and the DEA. It pointed out that there is currently a discrepancy in how the drug is handled at the state and federal levels, which can make “it difficult for law enforcement to respond effectively to pressing public safety challenges.” Additionally, that same discrepancy is empowering illicit sales.

Some lawmakers are also pushing for the classification change. Nearly a dozen Democratic senators have suggested the DEA “should deschedule marijuana altogether,” per The Hill. There are, of course, those who believe it should remain as-is. The Defense Department and the US Veterans Affairs Department issued a recommendation in which they said marijuana should not be used for treating post-traumatic stress disorder.

According to sources who spoke with the news outlet, the DEA is expected to issue its decision in the coming weeks.

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