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I’m writing to urge your support for HR 712 / S. 179 The VA Medicinal Cannabis Research Act of 2019 to facilitate federally-sponsored clinical research into the safety and efficacy of medical cannabis among veterans.
The legislation "would direct VA to conduct clinical research with varying forms of medicinal cannabis to evaluate the safety and effects of cannabis on health outcomes of veterans with PTSD and veterans with chronic pain."
This legislation is necessary because many veterans are already using cannabis medicinally. According to nationwide survey data conducted by The American Legion in 2017, 39 percent of respondents affirmed that they "know a veteran" who is using the plant medicinally.
Furthermore, twenty-two percent (nearly 1 in 4) of veteran respondents said they themselves "use cannabis to treat a mental or physical condition."
Yet the VA has consistently rejected calls from veterans groups and lawmakers to study the use of cannabis among military veterans.
That is why the passage of this legislation is necessary. There is no department or organization better suited to conduct this critically important research than VA, and there will never be a better time to act.
Please assist the health of our veterans and support The VA Medicinal Cannabis Research Act of 2019.