Legalization advocates aren’t the only ones who recognize that marijuana’s current restrictive federal classification inhibits research. Recently, a group involving several of the nation’s leading prohibition supporters raised this issue with Congress.
Friends of the National Institute On Drug Abuse (FNIDA) submitted recommended language on the issue to a Senate committee, voicing concern that the the status of cannabis and other drugs as a Schedule I controlled substances is preventing scientists from conducting valuable research.
It also contained text calling NIDA, a federal agency, to issue a report on research barriers related to marijuana’s scheduling status.
FNIDA describes itself in a newly published Senate document as “a coalition of over 150 scientific and professional societies, patient groups, and other organizations committed to preventing and treating substance use disorders as well as understanding their causes through the research agenda of NIDA.”
The group aimed to have the language adopted into a fiscal year 2019 spending report for the Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education, and Related Agencies. It’s not clear when FNIDA submitted the statement, but theirs and other recommendations were released by the Government Publishing Office earlier this month.
Here’s what FNIDA urged the committee to adopt:
“Barriers to Research—The Committee is concerned that restrictions associated with Schedule 1 of the Controlled Substance Act [CSA] effectively limit the amount and type of research that can be conducted on certain Schedule 1 drugs, especially marijuana or its component chemicals and certain synthetic drugs. At a time when we need as much information as possible about these drugs, we should be lowering regulatory and other barriers to conducting this research. The Committee directs NIDA to provide a short report on the barriers to research that result from the classification of drugs and compounds as Schedule 1 substances.”