420 with CNW — Senators, Feds Discuss Cannabis Legalization During Drug Overdose Hearing

Five decades after then President Richard Nixon declared drug abuse “public enemy number one,” paving the way for the era of the drug war, drug addiction and overdoses are still taking American lives. Since 1999, more than 800,000 people have died from drug overdoses in the United States, and drug abuse remains one of the country’s most pressing issues. Now that most experts agree that the war on drugs has been an unmitigated failure, lawmakers have been pursuing other options to curb addiction and give existing addicts the help they need, rather than jail time.

Last week, top federal health officials and lawmakers met at the Senate Caucus on International Narcotics Control to discuss the ever-present drug-overdose epidemic. The conversations at the Senate narcotics commission hearing were wide ranging, covering everything from cannabis research and THC concentrations to syringe exchange programs and protecting minorities from intense policing and harsh sentencing. While federal cannabis legalization reform wasn’t a major topic, the conversation around cannabis and cannabis extracts showed that the commission was seeing a hypothetical future where cannabis was federally legalized.

Regarding cannabis, Senator John Cornyn spoke to Nora Volkov, the director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse (“NIDA”), on the need for research on how high concentrations of THC affected developing juvenile brains and people with mental health challenges. Specifically, Cornyn asked Volkov if she thought Congress should mandate this research before it legalizes marijuana at the federal level so that, as he says, “we actually know what we’re doing.” According to Volkov, studying the impact of high-THC cannabis products on the brains of children and teenagers would help lawmakers understand the consequences of legalizing cannabis.

As such, she replied, this information is 100% necessary, and the government owes it to the people to collect this data before federally legalizing marijuana. Cannabis concentrates have become extremely popular in the past few years, with cannabis businesses selling $797 million worth of concentrates in 2020 up from $567 million in 2019. Cannabis is already the most abused drug in America, with the 2019 National Survey on Drug Use and Health finding that more than 48 million Americans over 12 years of age used cannabis that year.

If Congress is to legalize marijuana at the federal level and create a framework for a legal market, ensuring only adults access cannabis products and concentrates will be crucial. Seeing as lawmakers are seeking advice on the impact of high-THC products on juveniles from experts such as Volkov, there is a good chance the age of cannabis prohibition is finally drawing to a close.

Some companies, such as XPhyto Therapeutics Corp. (CSE: XPHY) (OTCQB: XPHYF) (FSE: 4XT), have opted to develop cannabis-based medicines that, when given regulatory approval, will not attract the same controversy as marijuana currently draws to itself while it is still federally prohibited.

NOTE TO INVESTORS: The latest news and updates relating to XPhyto Therapeutics Corp. (CSE: XPHY) (OTCQB: XPHYF) (FSE: 4XT) are available in the company’s newsroom at https://cnw.fm/XPHYF

About CNW420

CNW420 spotlights the latest developments in the rapidly evolving cannabis industry through the release of two informative articles each business day. Our concise, informative content serves as a gateway for investors interested in the legalized cannabis sector and provides updates on how regulatory developments may impact financial markets. Articles are released each business day at 4:20 a.m. and 4:20 p.m. Eastern – our tribute to the time synonymous with cannabis culture. If marijuana and the burgeoning industry surrounding it are on your radar, CNW420 is for you! Check back daily to stay up-to-date on the latest milestones in the fast -changing world of cannabis.

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