- About About
Medical Patient Resources Becoming a State-Authorized Patient Talking to your doctor Which conditions qualify? The Medical Cannabis Patient’s Guide for U.S. Travel Patient's Guide to CBD Patient's Guide to Medical Cannabis Guide to Using Medical Cannabis Condition-based Booklets Growing Cannabis Cannabis Tincture, Salve, Butter and Oil Recipes Leaf411 Affordability Program Tracking Treatment & Gathering Data with Releaf App Medical Professional Resources CME for Medical Professionals Cannabis Safety Medical Cannabis Research
- Legal Legal
Advocacy ASA Chapters Start an ASA Chapter Take Action Campaigns No Patient Left Behind End Pain, Not Lives Vote Medical Marijuana Medical Cannabis Advocate's Training Center Resources for Tabling and Lobby Days Strategic Planning Civics 101 Strategic Messaging Citizen Lobbying Participating in Implementation Movement Building Organizing a Demonstration Organizing Turnout for Civic Meetings Public Speaking Media 101 Patient's History of Medical Cannabis
Policy Model Federal Legislation Download Ending The Federal Conflict Public Comments by ASA Industry Standards Guide to Regulating Industry Standards Recognizing Science using the Data Quality Act Fact Sheet on ASA's Data Quality Act Petition to HHS Data Quality Act Briefs ASA Data Quality Act petition to HHS Information on Lawyers and Named Patients in the Data Quality Act Lawsuit Reports 2020 State of the States Medical Cannabis in America Medical Cannabis Access for Pain Treatment
- News News
- Join Join
From July 29 through August 2, Americans for Safe Access attended the annual National Conference of State Legislators (NCSL) in Los Angeles, California. We joined over 5,000 conference attendees (about 1,200 of which were state lawmakers or state legislative staff) to promote the goals of our End Pain, Not Lives Campaign.
What We Did
We distributed copies of our State of States Report, our Opioid Blueprint, and our Medical Cannabis Briefing Book. In addition to these materials, we were able to successfully get model legislation into the hands of a lawmaker from every state!
The model legislation is focused on using cannabis as an alternative to opioids and allows individuals who have received an opioid prescription to effectively trade that prescription in for a medical cannabis card. The legislation also creates a provisional card so patients can immediately access medicine while they are waiting on approval of their application. Additionally, it bans anyone from charging a fee to fill out an application for a patient.
While legislation similar to this has been introduced in Illinois, and has been adopted in New York through the Department of Health, the prospect of lawmakers in all fifty states potentially introducing this legislation is particularly exciting.
At the conference, we also recognized key lawmakers who pledged to End Pain, Not Lives through legislative or regulatory action.
While the focus of the conference is targeted on connecting advocates and lawmakers, ASA also had the opportunity to develop relationships with private sector groups and other nonprofits. Eaze, a cannabis delivery service in California, congratulated ASA on the work we do in providing patients resources to improve access. We were also able to connect with many local medical dispensary owners who expressed a strong interest in improving the presence of the ASA regional Chapter in Los Angeles. Stay tuned for exciting developments related to our Los Angeles Chapter in the coming weeks!
NSCL Sessions and Resolutions
Throughout the duration of the conference, NCSL hosted several sessions for legislators. There were several sessions related to the opioid crisis, but NCSL also hosted two cannabis specific sessions. The first, entitled The Crossroads of Cannabis, Federal Law and the States analyzed the conflict between state and federal law, and a path forward for states looking to expand there medical cannabis programs. The other session dealt with the challenges and obstacles businesses in the cannabis industry face when it comes to accessing banking services.
During the legislative summit, NCSL also approves policy resolutions. These resolutions do not have any binding authority, but do show the bipartisan agreement of legislators for a wide spectrum of states. In Los Angeles, NCSL approved a resolution about cannabis that reads in part:
“The National Conference of State Legislatures believes that federal laws, including the Controlled Substances Act, should be amended to explicitly allow states to set their own marijuana and hemp policies without federal interference and urges the administration not to undermine state marijuana and hemp policies. The National Conference of State Legislatures recognizes that its members have differing views on how to treat marijuana and hemp in their states and believes that states and localities should be able to set whatever marijuana and hemp policies work best to improve the public safety, health, and economic development of their communities.“
The full resolution is available here.
This is our second year attending the conference. The 2019 Conference is scheduled to take place in Nashville, Tennessee, from August 5-8.