| 29 February 2024, Thursday |

Ukrainian Parliament votes to legalise marijuana to tackle PTSD crisis amid Russia’s war

As the Russia-Ukraine war drags on and is set to complete two years in February 2024, reports suggest that thousands of Ukrainians are suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), a condition that is often seen in individuals stuck in the middle of the war.
Amid this dire mental health situation, the Ukrainian Parliament held a vote on Tuesday (December 19) to legalise marijuana (Cannabis), which is mostly banned but also used in a few countries for recreational purposes.

This move is being taken to tackle the reportedly PTSD crisis in war-ravaged Ukraine. The law was cleared in the Ukrainian Parliament, also known as Verkhovna Rada, with a majority vote of 248. The parliament has 401 seats in total.
Notably, the law was proposed by Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Smyhal. Who all voted in favour and in against the law was not immediately available, media reports said.

A report by the Associated Press said that the new law will take six months to become effective. The Ukrainian lawmakers are of the view that allowing marijuana will help them diminish these symptoms of trauma.
The new law, will come into effect in six months time frame. The legislation also greenlighted the use of cannabis for scientific and industrial ends.

Psychosocial toll of Ukraine war
With severe mental health consequences of the war reported in Ukraine, refugees who flee to neighbouring countries are also bearing the brunt.

A UN report highlighted that over 60 percent of Ukrainian refugee mothers in Poland are experiencing “high or severe levels of distress.”

“The psychosocial toll of the war in Ukraine is immense so the results of this survey are not a surprise,” Dr. Rashed Mustafa Sarwar, who leads the UNICEF Refugee Response Office in Poland reportedly said.

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