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Cannabis soon to be reclassified as a less dangerous drug in the United States

Photo: Leonardo Munoz Agence France-Presse This new federal classification could have significant economic repercussions, by encouraging medical research on cannabis, and by alleviating a certain number of regulatory and fiscal constraints.

France Media Agency in Washington

Posted at 7:47 p.m.

  • United States

The American government is preparing to reclassify cannabis as a less dangerous drug, a decision with potentially very significant implications, Agence France-Presse learned Tuesday from a source close to the American authorities.

With nearly three-quarters of Americans living in a state where the drug is legal, this new federal classification could have significant economic repercussions, by encouraging medical research on cannabis, and by easing a number of regulatory and tax constraints. .

According to this source, who requested anonymity, the Justice Department will recommend Tuesday to the White House Budget Office to pass the cannabis from category 1, that of substances considered very addictive and of no medical benefit, such as heroin, to category 3, in which certain codeine medications are found, for example.

This is a step in the reclassification process, which is expected to take some time.

The White House as well as the Department of Justice declined any comment on this information, first revealed by the American agency Associated Press.

The leader of the Democratic majority in the Senate, Chuck Schumer, welcomed in a press release a decision “recognizing the need for a change in restrictive and draconian cannabis laws to adapt what science and a majority of Americans clearly say.”

“Congress must do everything in our power to end federal prohibition of cannabis and treat the long-standing ills caused by the “War on Drugs” of the 1970s.

Canadian Border

President Joe Biden announced in October 2022 a series of measures to expunge the federal convictions of people sanctioned for simple possession of cannabis, thus removing obstacles they may encounter in terms of access to employment or housing.

He also called on health and judicial authorities to rethink the penalties associated with marijuana.

In 2020 and in 2022, the House of Representatives, then dominated by Democrats, passed a bill to remove cannabis from the federal list of dangerous drugs, but faced opposition from the Senate.

Following the legalization of cannabis in Canada in 2018, US Border Patrol agents began issuing lifetime bans on entry into the United States to Canadians who responded positively, during checks, to the question of whether they had already consumed it.

According to a survey released by Pew Research in March, 88 percent of Americans think marijuana should be legal, for medical use, for recreational use, or both.

Twenty-four American states, plus the District of Columbia where the capital Washington is located, have already legalized cannabis, and 14 others authorize medical use only.

This institute calculated in February that 74% of Americans now live in a state where the substance is legalized either for recreational or medical use.

Teilor Stone

By Teilor Stone

Teilor Stone has been a reporter on the news desk since 2013. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining Thesaxon , Teilor Stone worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my teilor@nizhtimes.com 1-800-268-7116