AUSTIN, Minn. - A veterans group is fighting to legalize cannabis in the state of Minnesota.
They had a town hall meeting on Tuesday in Austin to gain support.
Jeremy Sankey is the founder of Minnesota Veterans for Cannabis. Sankey has been a medical cannabis patient for 10 years.
“It's not a drug to me, it's not something that man has to alter in a lab,” Sankey said. “Cannabis is a plant you put a seed in the ground and it grows."
The veteran was injured on duty and found cannabis to have healing properties. He says too many veterans dealing with chronic pain turn to addictive opiates, alcohol or even suicide.
"You know with chronic pain cannabis can work so much better,” Sankey said. “You don't have the damage to your liver, kidney and other organs that you need. "
In the state of Minnesota medical cannabis is legal but is expensive.
For vets on a fixed income, it's out of their budget. That's why Minnesota Veterans for Cannabis is pushing for cannabis to be fully legalized. The veteran's organization argues full legalization would improve access and reduce costs.
“Our goal is to get people on both sides of the spectrum talking about the issue,” Sankey said.