|Photo: Phoenix New Times|
|Protesters at the Phoenix Global Marijuana March 2008|
The Arizona Medical Marijuana Policy Project Wednesday submitted more than 250,000 signatures to the Arizona Secretary of State’s office in order to place medical marijuana on the November ballot in Arizona.
The initiative requires 153,365 signatures to qualify for the ballot. Once the initiative qualifies, Arizona voters will be asked on November 2 to vote yes on the Arizona Medical Marijuana Act, which would allow terminally and seriously ill patients who find relief from marijuana to use it with their doctor’s approval.
|Andrew Myers, AMMPP: “People suffering from multiple sclerosis, cancer, AIDS, and other serious illnesses should not be forced to seek on the streets the medicine they and their doctors know they need”|
”We are proud to turn in these signatures today on behalf of the thousands of patients in Arizona who will benefit from this law once it is enacted,” said Andrew Myers, campaign manager for the Arizona Medical Marijuana Policy Project (AMMPP).
“People suffering from multiple sclerosis, cancer, AIDS, and other serious illnesses should not be forced to seek on the streets the medicine they and their doctors know they need,” Myers said. “This initiative proposes instead a dispensary system that will give patients safe and reliable access to medical marijuana if they possess a doctor’s recommendation to use it,” Myers said.
“We look forward to qualifying for the ballot and bringing our message to voters over the coming months,” Myers said.
Upon its passage, medical marijuana will be regulated by the Arizona Department of Health Services and will permit qualifying patients or their caregivers to legally purchase their medicine from tightly regulated clinics — they need not purchase it from the criminal market.
Seriously ill patients will be protected from arrest and prosecution for the simple act of taking doctor-recommended medicine.
If the initiative qualifies, Arizona will join South Dakota in having medical marijuana initiatives on the ballot this November.
Currently, 14 states have effective medical marijuana laws, and more than a dozen other states, including New York, Illinois, and Delaware are considering medical marijuana laws this year.