Patients Applaud President Biden Signing Cannabis Research Bill, Demand Continued Medical Cannabis Reforms

Patients Applaud President Biden Signing Cannabis Research Bill, Demand Continued Medical Cannabis Reforms

President Biden Signed the Medical Marijuana and Cannabidiol Research Act, the First Stand-Alone Cannabis Reform Bill, but Cannabis Patients Still Left Behind

Washington, DC – Today, President Biden signed into law the Medical Marijuana and Cannabidiol Research Act, making this piece of legislation the first successful standalone cannabis reform bill to become law. Americans for Safe Access has advocated for less restrictive barriers to cannabis research and applauds the signing of this bill. However, ASA expects this to be just the first of many medical  cannabis reforms to come. We want lawmakers to know: this bill is just the beginning - it is not the finish line.

“While the research bill certainly reduces some barriers for cannabis researchers, it does nothing to address the critical problems patients across the country experience due to larger federal inaction on cannabis policy,” said Abbey Roudebush, Director of Government Affairs. “We have been advocating for federal cannabis reforms, including reducing barriers to research, but are well aware that our job is not done until everyone has equitable and legal access to medical cannabis on the federal level.”

The country has experimented with state-by-state cannabis policy models for over 25 years, but federal inaction on substantial cannabis reforms continues to prevent patients from traveling with their medicine, working for the federal government, accessing important federal programs, and most importantly, having safe and legal access to medical cannabis that is treated the same way under law as any other medical treatment decision. 

The country has fallen behind many other countries with respect to cannabis. The bill signed today begins to place this country on a more modern path to cannabis policy, but is only the very tip of the iceberg, especially for patients who rely on cannabis for any number of chronic conditions or diseases. 

Congress can change this and show their support for patients by passing medical cannabis legislation to support cannabis patients. Americans for Safe Access is urging Congress to take advantage of the momentum behind cannabis policy and finally move to recognize medical cannabis as legal on the federal level. By creating an Office of Medical Cannabis Control, we can end the piecemeal bureaucratic approach to cannabis policy, more responsibly harness federal funds, and appropriately oversee and coordinate cannabis policy across the United States to ensure that all patients are treated equally, regardless of which state they live in. 

“Medical cannabis patients and advocates have been demanding safe access programs and basic rights for over 25 years. It is our hope this legislation marks only the beginning of the willingness of Congress to work with us to better serve the patient population,” said Debbie Churgai, Executive Director of Americans for Safe Access. 


More information: 

ASA’s Model Federal Legislation

Medical Marijuana and Cannabidiol Research Act


About Americans for Safe Access

ASA is the largest national organization of patients, medical cannabis providers, medical professionals, scientists and concerned citizens promoting safe and legal access to cannabis for therapeutic use and research with over 150,000 active members and supporters in all 50 states. Since its inception, ASA has successfully shifted the national debate around medical cannabis, which has focused solely on the legality and ethics of arresting and prosecuting patients for cannabis use, to include the real concerns of patients, such as access and civil protections. ASA has worked with lawmakers across the country to adopt and improve medical cannabis legislation and regulatory policy as well as representing patients on Capitol Hill.