Veterans who support medical use of Cannabis upset about CBD advisory from Alcohol Tobacco Control

Updated: Mar. 27, 2019 at 8:28 PM CDT
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LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) -The Office of Alcohol and Tobacco Control issued a halt to sale of CBD statewide. In the State of Louisiana, products made from a marijuana plant are classified as a Schedule I substance according to the Louisiana Controlled Dangerous Substance Law.

An advisory was posted on the web site of Louisiana Alcohol and Tobacco Control and seems to have created much confusion. That’s because under federal law production of hemp products is legalized and under Louisiana law the products are prohibited.

It all boils down to the amount of THC in the products. Hemp products contain less than .3% THC while Louisiana law allows NO trace amounts of THC.

The office says the only one who can clarify is the commissioner - who is out of the office and unavailable.

One local disabled veteran says it's created suffering and uncertainty among those who rely on Cannabidiol or CBD for relief.

Disabled veteran Izaak Thibodeaux was a combat medic who served in Afghanistan. In 2012 he was seriously injured and medically retired as a result, in 2014. He says he suffers chronic back pain, PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) and anxiety.

"I was an Airborne Ranger with the 173rd combat medic. I saw a lot of things, developed PTSD from that, I was blown up in Afghanistan, I have 28 plus jumps, and in Afghanistan I sustained injuries to my spinal cord, injuries to my brain," said Thibodeaux. He says he has a continuing bond with other members of the 173rd Airborne Brigade Combat Team, some of whom did not make it home.

While in Colorado he and his wife and caregiver, Marlena, discovered medical marijuana provided relief far superior to sometimes dangerous medications.

"You see a completely different person, when he uses. I know for me it was like seeing the light at the end of the tunnel, not just for him but for everyone around him," she said.

Isaak says prescribed drugs, opioids and others made him feel like a zombie and cause harm to so many.

"The pharmaceuticals are killing us. Literally. Over 50 American heroes are lost every day to suicide and prescription drug overdose," said Izaak.

He says Louisiana has taken four years and still doesn't have its medical marijuana program up and running.

"I’m a law-abiding citizen so for me access to cannabis became abstinence,” he said.

He and others got some relief from cbd oil--but now, those who want to be law abiding citizens are confused and in a bind, “For Louisiana officials to turn around and issue a statement like that it’s basically you’re denying our citizens access to medicine that really works for guys like me and so many, we wind up back on nine plus medications.” Thibodeaux says he and others are dedicated to continuing the fight for safe, affordable access to cannabis.

The organization the Thibodeauxs have created is Cannabis for Warriors. They also have a web site. Participants urge people who support their effort to attend 422 Lobby Day at the Legislature.

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