|Photo: Q13 Fox|
|Laura Stevens, Green Hope: “Our governor failed us.”|
The Shoreline City Council heard from medical marijuana patients and providers Monday night. The cannabis supporters want the Washington city to stop its plans to shut down local dispensaries.
“We’ve got cancer patients who have chemo next week; they want their next medicine, they’re coming to me crying not knowing what to do,” said Laura Stevens, who runs Green Hope, a medical marijuana dispensary in Shoreline, reports Kirsten Joyce at Q13 Fox. “I don’t know what to tell them.”
“Our governor failed us,” Stevens told the council. She said many of her patients suffer from cancer, AIDS and Crohn’s disease.
|Photo: Q Fox 13|
|Dennis Ryder, medical marijuana patient: “We need a place”|
”We need a place, and we have a place to go safely get what we need to deal with our pain,” said Dennis Ryder, who goes to Green Hope for his chronic arthritis.
The legislature’s fix of the state’s medical marijuana law last session — which would have legalized dispensaries in the state — was almost entirely vetoed by Governor Christine Gregoire in a line-item gutting of the legislation.
Now many local jurisdictions like Shoreline have decided to act on theiur own.
The governor did allow for 45-plant collective gardens, but vetoed provisions allowing the marijuana to be distributed to patients.
Dozens of dispensaries across Washington — including even those like Shoreline, in the more pot-friendly Puget Sound area — are endangered by the new rules.
Tacoma has issued cease-and-desist orders. Edmonds and Granite Falls put moratoriums in place, and Shoreline revoked the business licenses of a few dispensaries back in February, including that of Green Hope, owned by Stevens.
Co-ops in Kent received their cease-and-desist orders in the mail on Monday. They plan to attend their city council meeting this week.
“If they shut down nonprofit patient cooperatives and dispensaries, that will force thousands of patients into the black market,” said Ezra Eickmeyer, a local lobbyist for the Washington Cannabis Association.