Medical Marijuana

One of the most egregious outcomes of marijuana prohibition is that many sick people cannot legally access the medicine that works best for them. For many seriously ill people, medical marijuana is the only medicine that relieves their pain and suffering, or treats symptoms of their medical condition, without debilitating side effects. Marijuana has been shown to alleviate symptoms of a huge variety of serious medical conditions including cancer, AIDS, and glaucoma, and is often an effective alternative to synthetic painkillers. 

Medical Marijuana Access and Research 

Twenty-three states and the District of Columbia have passed medical marijuana laws legalizing the use and production of medical marijuana for qualifying patients under state law. However, the medical use of marijuana remains illegal under federal law, and patients in the remaining states are without any legal access at all.  Even in states where medical marijuana laws exist, patients and providers are vulnerable to arrest and interference from federal law enforcement.  
 
Marijuana prohibition has also thwarted research within the United States to uncover the best and most effective uses for marijuana as a medicine, making efforts to reform medical marijuana laws particularly difficult.
 
DPA played a primary role in the passage of medical marijuana laws in nine states, starting with California’s Proposition 215 in 1996. We seek to implement medical marijuana programs in additional states and to expand existing programs to better protect patients’ rights and to improve patient access to their medicine.  
 
The Drug Policy Alliance is committed to increasing the number of states with medical marijuana laws, supporting and improving existing state medical marijuana programs, protecting medical marijuana patients, and ending the federal ban on medical marijuana so that all patients within the United States have safe access to quality medicine and research into marijuana’s medicinal benefits can move forward. 

President Obama's Justice Department Issues Medical Marijuana Guidance to U.S. Attorneys

New Guidelines Raise More Questions than They Answer

Drug Policy Alliance Statement: Obama Misses Opportunity to Clarify State/Federal Conflict over Medical Marijuana and Pave the Way for Responsible Regulation in 16 states and the District of Columbia

The following is a statement from Bill Piper, director of national affairs at the Drug Policy Alliance.

Tony Newman 646-335-5384 or Bill Piper 202-669-6430

Obama Administration Clarifies Medical Marijuana Enforcement for New Jersey

Advocates Urge Governor Chris Christie to Move Forward with Implementation of New Jersey's Medical Marijuana Program

Patients and Families Hopeful that Sick and Dying People Will Soon Find Relief

Trenton—Advocates and medical marijuana patients and their families expressed optimism regarding the future of New Jersey's medical marijuana program in light of the recently released U.S. Department of Justice memorandum providing guidance on state medical marijuana programs.  Deputy Attorney General James Cole's memo reiterates statements from the Obama administration's 2009 Ogden memo that the Department of Justice does not consider it an efficient use of federal resources to prosecute medical marijuana patients and caregivers.

Roseanne Scotti 609-610-8243 or Tommy McDonald 510-229-5215

Obama Administration Clarifies Medical Marijuana Enforcement for New Jersey

Advocates Urge Governor Chris Christie to Move Forward with Implementation of New Jersey’s Medical Marijuana Program

Patients and Families Hopeful that Sick and Dying People Will Soon Find Relief

Patients and Families Hopeful that Sick and Dying People Will Soon Find Relief

Trenton—Advocates and medical marijuana patients and their families expressed optimism regarding the future of New Jersey’s medical marijuana program in light of the recently released U.S. Department of Justice memorandum providing guidance on state medical marijuana programs.  Deputy Attorney General James Cole’s memo reiterates statements from the Obama administration’s 2009 Ogden memo that the Department of Justice does not consider it an efficient use of federal resources to prosecute medical marijuana patients and caregivers.

Contact: Roseanne Scotti 609-610-8243 or Tommy McDonald 510-229-5215

Memorandum for U.S. Attorneys: Guidance Regarding the Ogden Memo in Jurisdictions Seeking to Authorize Marijuana for Medical Use

June 29, 2011
James M. Cole, Deputy Attorney General of the United States

The U.S. Department of Justice issued a memo to all U.S. Attorneys on its enforcement policies in states that have authorized marijuana for medical use.

Today: Members of Congress to Introduce Historic Legislation Ending Marijuana Prohibition

The Legislation, Modeled after the Repeal of Alcohol Prohibition, Comes on the 40th Anniversary of the Failed War on Drugs and on the Heels of a Global Commission Report Recommending Marijuana Legalization

Teleconference: Rep. Barney Frank and Leading Organizations Working to End the Failed War on Marijuana Explain the Significance of the Legislation

Tony Newman 646-335-5384 or Bill Piper 202-669-6430

A Mother's Story Helps Spread Truth About Marijuana

Rev. Carol Antun shares her story of her son's suicide following ridicule and judgment for his marijuana use. This is an excerpt from The Exile Nation Project, directed by Charles Shaw.

Advocates Urge Governor Chris Christie to Reconsider Delay in Implementation of New Jersey’s Medical Marijuana Program

Patients and Families Accuse State Officials of Playing Politics with the Lives of Sick and Dying People

 

Contact: Tony Newman 646-335-5384
or Roseanne Scotti 609-610-8243

Three Important Medical Marijuana Bills Introduced in Congress

Legislation a Reaction to Department of Justice's Interference with State-authorized Medical Marijuana Programs

Medical Marijuana Patients, Medical Providers and Caregivers Seeking Protection from Overreaching by Federal Government

Three important bi-partisan bills pertaining to state-authorized medical marijuana programs were introduced in Congress today, by three different Members of Congress. The legislation sends a clear signal to US Attorneys, the Department of Justice, and the DEA to stop trying to undermine state laws designed to provide cancer, AIDS and other medical marijuana patients with safe and legal access to their medicine.

Tony Newman 646-335-5384 or Bill Piper 202-669-6430

Drug War Update: Obama and Medical Marijuana Raids

Ethan Nadelmann

DPA Executive Director Ethan Nadelmann talks about the latest developments in the world of medical marijuana in the US and President Obama's difficulties keeping his campaign promises and word as President to not interfere with medical marijuana dispensaries in states that have approved medical marijuana law.

This is the third update from DPA's No More Drug War campaign.

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