Claudia Heidelberger

American Legion Affirms Resolution Backing Medical Marijuana

The American Legion’s Committee on Veterans Affairs & Rehabilitation is calling on the DEA to “license privately-funded medical marijuana operations” and reschedule the drug in order to increase access for veterans. The resolution was affirmed during the 88th National Convention of the American Legion in Cincinnati, Ohio.

According to the resolution, the committee believes that medical cannabis is a viable therapy for treating both post-traumatic stress disorder and traumatic brain injury.

“I consider this a major breakthrough for such a conservative veterans organization,” Dr. Sue Sisley, a researcher for the first federally-approved study examining medical cannabis as a PTSD therapy, said in a report. “Suddenly the American Legion has a tangible policy statement on cannabis that will allow them to lobby and add this to their core legislative agenda. The organization has a massive amount of influence at all levels.”

Sisley has lobbied the organization to endorse her research for the past two years, and was a speaker at the Cincinnati convention. She said many local posts have supported her work — and marijuana therapies — but getting support from the national office is a “historic shift in public policy.”

Twelve states recognize PTSD as a qualifying condition for their medical marijuana programs. New Jersey could become the thirteenth if Gov. Chris Christie signs the bill, passed by the legislature last month, adding the condition.   

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