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European Union Approves Medical Cannabis Signature Drive

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Medical cannabis reform is spreading across the European continent, which is great. However, the rate at which it is spreading is not fast enough to help all of the suffering patients who need the wellness benefits that medical cannabis can provide.

Unfortunately, medical cannabis was hindered for several decades due to prohibition policies throughout Europe. It is only in recent years that medical cannabis has been embraced, and even then, it’s not in every nation and is moving at a pace that does not do justice to the potential that medical cannabis possesses.

Access to medical cannabis and cannabis-based research is desperately needed throughout Europe, and that premise is at the heart of a new signature drive that was recently approved to proceed by the European Union. Per excerpts from original reporting by Marijuana Moment:

European Union (EU) officials have cleared activists to launch a signature drive for a multi-national initiative that would foster access to medical marijuana and promote research into the therapeutic potential of cannabis.

The activists behind the measure laid out three objectives they want the commission to pursue, but the body said it could only register two of them.

One approved objective asks the commission to “foster access to medical cannabis and allow the transportation of cannabis and its derivatives prescribed for therapeutic purposes to ensure the full enjoyment of the right to health.” The other requests that EU allocate “the necessary resources for researching cannabis for its therapeutic purposes.”

Activists had also pushed for the creation of a “trans-European citizens’ assembly on cannabis policies, including sanctions and the consistency of Member States’ policies,” however, the European Union indicated that it would not register that particular objective.

Advocates leading the effort will now have six months to start a petitioning drive, after which they will have one year to collect one million valid signatures. The valid signatures must come from at least seven European Union member states in order to mandate consideration.

The European Citizens’ Initiative was first introduced with the Lisbon Treaty as an agenda-setting tool in the hands of citizens. It was officially launched in April 2012 according to the European Union’s listing of the measure.

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