|Graphic: Cannabis Culture|
|The Massachusetts Bar Association — and a huge majority of state residents — favor medical marijuana.|
The Massachusetts Bar Association’s (MBA) House of Delegates voted overwhelmingly last month to support House Bill 2160, a bipartisan medical marijuana bill introduced in the State House earlier this year.
The bill would “regulate the use of marijuana by patients approved by physicians and certified by the department of public health.”
“The MBA supports this legislation because it affirms the rights of patients to be treated with medical marijuana — a drug with proven efficacy — while including important regulations to deter improper use,” said former MBA president David White, who introduced the measure.
“Provisions like state-issued ID cards for patients, state certification of a limited number of dispensaries, and rules governing secure growing sites ensure that only patients who have their doctor’s recommendation can obtain medical marijuana.”
Four local sheriffs have also come out in support of the bill: Carmen Massimiano of Berkshire County, Robert Garvey of Hampshire County, Richard Bretschneider of Nantucket County, and Andrea Cabral of Suffolk County.
Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley also expressed her support for the use of medical marijuana, “only with a prescription,” during an appearance on a radio show last June.
On September 23, Suffolk University released the results of a poll that showed 81 percent of Massachusetts residents support allowing “seriously ill patients to use, grow, and purchase marijuana for medical purposes if they have the approval of their physicians.”
The poll found incredibly strong support in every demographic, including support from 86 percent of senior citizens and 70 percent of Republicans.
Massachusetts residents who want to show lawmakers that their constituents care about medical marijuana patients may use the free and automated system to write legislators in support of HB 2160 provided by the Massachusetts Patient Advocacy Alliance.
The Massachusetts chapter of the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, the Massachusetts Breast Cancer Coalition, the AIDS Action Committee, and the AIDS Support Group of Cape Cod have all called for the state to protect seriously ill patients who need medical marijuana.
The legislation is based closely on Rhode Island’s medical marijuana law, which is so uncontroversial that the state’s legislators voted to make it permanent in 2007 by more than four to one.
Members of organizations that might endorse the medical marijuana bill are invited to contact Matt Allen to see how they can help. Patients and medical professionals interested in speaking out can click here to tell their story to the MPAA.
Thirteen states have passed medical marijuana laws, including Massachusetts’ neighbors Rhode Island and Vermont. Legislation is being considered in at least 14 other states, including New York and New Jersey.
The entire text of the bill can be read at: