DEA removes some wrong Marijuana info from Website

Posted by Sagar Satapathy on February 22, 2017.

The Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) has removed factually inaccurate information about marijuana from its highly erroneous website following public pressure and a legal request filed last year by the ‘Americans for Safe Access (ASA), a national nonprofit.

In a legal challenge filed on Dec. 5, the ASA claimed in a publication titled “Dangers and Consequences of Marijuana” on the DEA’s website, there were more than 25 false statements about marijuana, including inaccuracies about marijuana causing psychosis, lung cancer, and irreversible cognitive damage in adults.

 The ASA argued that misleading statements are in violation of the Information Quality Act, which was enacted to ensure information published by federal agencies is reliable and factual.

“The DEA’s removal of these popular myths about marijuana from their website could mean the end of the Washington gridlock” said ASA’s executive director Steph Sherer in a statement. “The federal government now admits that marijuana is not a gateway drug, and doesn’t cause long-term brain damage, or psychosis.”

This is a victory for medical marijuana patients across the country, who use marijuana to treat serious illnesses, Sherer said. While the fight to end stigma around cannabis is far from over, this is a big first step.

Though the federal agency has removed some alternative facts, several other allegedly misleading statements about medical marijuana remain in the official website of DEA. However, the ASA maintains that they have yet to receive an official response from the agency, which is now one week past the deadline to formally respond to the legal request.

“We are hopeful the DEA will also remove the remaining statements rather than continue to mislead the public in the face of the scientifically proven benefits of medical marijuana.” said Vickie Freeman, a partner at the law firm Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe.

The recent move of the DEA comes at a time when newly appointed Attorney General Jeff Sessions enters the agency with a history of anti-marijuana sentiment.

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