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Medical Marijuana Initiative Returning To 2016 Ballot


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Image: medical marijuana, cpr.org

It’s official: The medical marijuana initiative is returning to the ballot in 2016. United for Care has collected more than enough verified signatures to put the issue up to a vote in November.

So Floridians will get to decide on a constitutional amendment that would allow licensed doctors to prescribe marijuana to their patients, in a presidential election that virtually guarantees high voter turnout.

Ben Pollara, executive director of United for Care, said, “Every day, doctors prescribe dangerous, addictive, and potentially deadly narcotics to their patients but can’t even suggest the use of marijuana. Very soon, Florida doctors will finally have that option.”

In 2014, Gov. Rick Scott signed Senate Bill 1030, also known as the Charlotte’s Web bill, making it legal within certain limited conditions for doctors to prescribe a non-euphoric strain to patients with cancer or seizure disorders. The bill also tightly restricted the licensing process for growers, and implementation was almost immediately bogged down in legal challenges.

The proposed amendment doesn’t directly address growing restrictions, but it broadens treatable conditions to include multiple sclerosis, PTSD, Crohn’s disease, Parkinson’s and other conditions “for which a physician believes that the medical use of marijuana would likely outweigh the potential health risks for a patient.”

23 states have already legalized medical marijuana, and a Quinnipiac poll last year found that 84 percent of Floridians support the legalization of medical marijuana. If Florida’s legislators can’t take the lead on this issue, it’s clear that Florida’s voters will.

 


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