In the past months there has been a flurry of activity throughout the country with many states considering legislation to allow the use of cannabidiol (CBD) to treat epilepsy and seizures. The Epilepsy Foundation has been advocating for passage of these bills and we encourage everyone in the epilepsy community to do the same. On this page you will find information and tools to support epilepsy advocacy on the federal and state level.
The Epilepsy Foundation supports legislation recently introduced by Representative Scott Perry (R-PA), the Charlotte’s Web Medical Hemp Act of 2014 (H.R. 5226), which would remove therapeutic hemp from the Controlled Substances Act and expand access to cannabidiol (CBD) oil for the treatment of intractable epilepsy. Read more.
How You Can Help
- Join the Epilepsy Foundation advocacy network - Speak Up & Speak Out
- Take action on our current alerts On the Federal level in Congress, the White House and federal agencies we are advocating for protection of current state laws, changes to the process for medical research involving cannabis, and changes to the scheduling of marijuana that places obstacles to research, increased costs, and an inefficient system for researchers. On the state level, we support access created through state systems that allow for production and access to CBD oil. Our Speak Up Speak Out advocacy network will feature all current legislative initatives!
- Share our statement on social media and with friends and family
Current Laws and Active Legislation
To view a table outlining the laws passed by 23 states and the District of Columbia allowing medical cannabis please go to http://www.ncsl.org/research/health/state-medical-marijuana-laws.aspx. This page also breaks down the laws that have been passed that only allow the use of CBD.
We believe that the federal government has a significant role to play in the future of medical cannabis which is why we have supported a number of federal bills to reschedule cannabis and protect states that have implemented medical marijuana programs.
- H.R. 689 (States’ Medical Marijuana Patient Protection Act) would reschedule cannabis to Schedule III or lower and would help improve research by taking away control over cannabis research from the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA). It would also protect those states that have already passed medical cannabis legislation.
- H.R. 4498 (Legitimate Use of Medical Marijuana Act) would reschedule cannabis to Schedule II and protect those states that have already passed medical cannabis legislation .
- H.R. 5226 (Charlotte’s Web Medical Hemp Act of 2014) would remove therapeutic hemp (defined as less than .3% THC) and cannabidiol from the Controlled Substances Act.
- We have also supported the CJS (Commerce, Justice, Science and other Agencies) appropriations amendments. These amendments would institute protections for those states that have allowed medicinal cannabis.
We are also tracking current compassionate access legislation in the states. Many states are considering bills that would allow compassionate access for those living with epilepsy. For some of these states we have created action alerts for you to send a message to your legislators. Please take a moment and check our current alerts for issues in your state that you can take action on.