LeadingAge Advocacy Goals
- Seek confirmation from the federal government that it will not pursue civil or criminal actions against providers if they allow the use of medical marijuana pursuant to state laws and regulations.
- Support federal legislation or regulations to prohibit any federal agency interference with state medical marijuana laws.
- Work with state LeadingAge affiliates, as requested, to support legislation at the state level to enact medical marijuana statutes and regulations that will allow seniors to access it under appropriate circumstances to alleviate pain and other symptoms of the disease.
Medical marijuana is legal in 33 states and the District of Columbia. Under federal law, marijuana remains a Schedule I drug and is illegal. There is no clarity from the federal government or agencies on whether they will pursue enforcement activities against those using medical marijuana pursuant to state laws allowing it.
Advocacy Action 2020
- STATES Act: We support the Strengthening the Tenth Amendment Through Entrusting States (STATES) Act (S. 1028; H.R. 2093) to protect state-legal cannabis and medical marijuana programs from federal interference. We support and promote enactment.
- Banking: We support the Secure and Fair Enforcement Banking Act of 2019 (SAFE Banking Act) (H.R. 1595; S. 1200) to grant cannabis businesses access to the banking system without fear of federal government intervention.
- Federal Legalization and Related Provisions: We monitor the Marijuana Opportunity and Reinvestment and Expungement Act of 2019 (MORE Act) (S. 2227; H.R. 3884), which would legalize marijuana and add social justice provisions to help undo the damage from the War on Drugs.
- Federal legalization: We monitor the Marijuana Justice Act of 2019 (S. 597; H.R. 1456), which would legalize marijuana on the federal level.
- Medical Marijuana Guidance: We explore options for regulatory guidance or memorandum from federal agencies discouraging any civil or criminal enforcement of medical marijuana usage in states where it is legal.
- Cannabidiol (CBD) Guidance: Now that CBD is legal after the passage of the 2018 Farm Bill, we monitor the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) progress on issuing regulations/guidance on the use of CBD in Medicare- and Medicaid-financed settings.
Actions You Can Take Now
- Visit the Advocacy Action Center to let your representative and senators know your views on the legal use of medical marijuana by older adults.
- Host a Coffee Chat with Congress in your community to help your members of Congress understand how policies related to medical marijuana affect older adults.
- Mobilize with the Advocacy Champions toolkit and let your representatives and senators know your views on medical marijuana for older adults.
- Medical Marijuana FAQs: What Providers Need to Know if Legal in Their State
- FDA Regulation of Cannabis and Cannabis-Derived Products, Including Cannabidiol (CBD)
Source: National Conference of State Legislatures