Peru Passes Bill to Legalize Medical Marijuana

Peru’s government passed a bill to legalize medical marijuana.
Peru Passes Bill to Legalize Medical Marijuana
Nico Escondido/High Times

The voices of Peruvian protestors are finally being heard. The country’s conservative Congress passed a bill to legalize medical marijuana on Thursday. The vote won in a landslide with a 68-5 vote in favor of allowing oil from the plant to be produced, imported and commercialized.

Medical Marijuana Mamas

The momentum for legal medical marijuana came from Peruvian mothers that want access to safer medicine.

Ana Alvarez is a mother of four who turned part of her home in Lima into a cannabis laboratory. She also takes informal visits from other patients and prescribes them marijuana derivatives to help curb debilitating conditions.

It all started when her son Anthony was suffering from multiple daily seizures. Cannabis was the only thing that helped to stop the seizures. That’s when she began helping to heal others in Peru.

“After three days of taking marijuana oil, Anthony started to reconnect with life, he began to socialize, he began to sleep, he began to eat and little by little he started to recover, “she said. “The change after three days was something extraordinary and from that moment my fight began.”

Ana wasn’t alone in her fight.

Dorothy Santiago, a 29-year-old naval officer, shared her vision. That’s because Santiago’s own five-year-old son, Rodrigo, was suffering from the same conditions as Anthony.

Ana and Dorothy decided to form Buscando Esperanza (Searching for Hope), which has been campaigning for medical marijuana. The group has over 200 members.

Buscando Esperanza and others protested in favor of legalizing medical marijuana. They picketed outside the Interior Ministry in Lima, Peru earlier this year. One sign had “give me back my medicine, do not let me die,” written on it.

Peru Passes Bill to Legalize Medical Marijuana

Afer police in Peru raided a Buscando Esperanza lab, President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski proposed a new measure to legalize medical marijuana.

The bill was passed with a 68-5 vote in favor of allowing cannabis oil, not flowers, to be grown and distributed for medical purposes.

Ruling party lawmaker Alberto Belaunde said that the regulations would be written within 60 days. The new rules will establish how cannabis oil should be produced and commercialized.

“Thousands of patients and their family members will have hope and a better quality of life,” said Belaunde.

Medical cannabis is already legal in Peru’s neighboring countries like Chile and Colombia. Uruguay, on the other hand, has fully legalized the harvesting and distribution of recreational cannabis.

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