DEA to Move Marijuana to Schedule III, Making It Easier to Study and Use as Medicine

DEA Says Marijuana is Less Dangerous and will Make It Easier to Get for Medical use. 

The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) has made a big decision. They have agreed to move marijuana from Schedule I to Schedule III. 

This is a historic change that could make it easier for people to use marijuana as medicine. What Does This Mean?

  • Right now, marijuana is in the same group as dangerous drugs like heroin and LSD. This group is called Schedule I. The government says medications in this group Have a high chance of being abused
  • Have no accepted medical use
  • However, many states have already made marijuana legal for medical use. Some have even made it legal for recreation. This goes against the current federal law. Last year, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) looked at marijuana again, and they said it should be moved to Schedule III. They found that marijuana: Has medical uses
  • Has a lower chance of being abused than drugs in Schedule I and II
DEA to Move Marijuana to Schedule III, Making It Easier to Study and Use as Medicine

Now, the DEA has agreed with HHS. They will ask the public what they think about this change. If the White House approves, marijuana will be moved to Schedule III. How Will This Change Things?

  • Moving marijuana to Schedule III could make a big difference: It will be easier for scientists to study marijuana and see if it can help with different health problems.
  • Marijuana businesses in states where it’s legal might be able to pay less taxes.
  • There might be less severe penalties for marijuana-related crimes.
  • However, it’s important to remember: Marijuana will still be illegal under federal law, even in Schedule III.
  • Businesses will still need to follow strict rules to grow, sell, or make products with marijuana.

What Happens Next?

  1. The DEA’s proposal will go through a few more steps before it’s final: The White House will review the plan.
  2. The public will have a chance to share their thoughts during a comment period.
  3. The DEA will publish the final rule moving marijuana to Schedule III.
  • After that, we can expect more talk in Congress about making more significant changes to marijuana laws.
  • Continued pressure from advocates to fully legalize marijuana at the federal level

Not Everyone Agrees

While many people are excited about this change, not everyone thinks it’s a good idea. Some worry that making marijuana more accessible could lead to more people using it in harmful ways. Others argue the DEA should altogether remove marijuana from the list of controlled substances, not just move it to a lower schedule.

DEA to Move Marijuana to Schedule III
DEA to Move Marijuana to Schedule III

A Long Time Coming

  • The DEA’s decision comes after years of changing attitudes about marijuana in the U.S. 38 states have legalized medical marijuana.
  • 24 states have legalized recreational marijuana
  • Polls show most Americans support legalizing marijuana in some form.
  • President Biden has also taken steps to change marijuana policy. Last year, he Ordered a review of federal marijuana laws.
  • Pardoned thousands of people with federal convictions for simple marijuana possession

What This Means for the Future

  • The DEA’s agreeing to reschedule marijuana is a historic step. But it’s just the beginning of a longer process to update federal cannabis policy. In the coming years, we can expect more debate in Congress about federal marijuana laws.
  • Continued growth of the legal marijuana industry, which could be worth over $30 billion soon
  • Ongoing efforts by advocates to address the harms caused by years of strict marijuana prohibition

One thing is clear: the country’s attitude toward marijuana has changed a lot in the last 50 years. The DEA’s decision reflects that. But there’s still a long way to go before marijuana is treated appropriately. What does that look like to you? Watch this space and our website to stay current on this breaking topic.

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