Virginia lawmakers, Del. Dawn Adams (D), and Sen. Ghazala Hashmi (D) along with Sen. Jennifer Boysko (D), introduced new bills to decriminalize the possession of psychedelics.
The proposals in the House of Delegates and Senate are nearly identical, except that the measure in the former chamber covers several psychedelic substances while the other would only reduce penalties for psilocybin and psilocin, reported Marijuana Moment.
“One thing that has intrigued me in the process of learning myself is the kind of tremendous research that is available that demonstrates that these particular plant based medicines have the capacity to heal, to help and assist people in ways that other medicines often cannot do,” Sen. Hashmi said during a virtual event organized by the reform group Decriminalize Nature Virginia in December.
“It is increasingly a recognized treatment for refractory depression and PTSD,” said Del. Adams, a nurse practitioner whose legislation would also decriminalize peyote, a cactus that contains the psychedelic compound mescaline.
In the House of Delegates, the newly reinstated Republican majority has historically resisted efforts to loosen drug laws. That said, Del. Bell (R), who leads the chamber’s Courts of Justice Committee, said he is open to hearing arguments in favor of the legislation, reported virginiamercury.com.
If the legislature does approve the legislation, it could face resistance from the state’s incoming Republican governor, Glenn Youngkin.
Photo by Ryan Ledbetter on Unsplash.
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