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Governor Jack Markell of Delaware on Friday signed into law a measure legalizing medical marijuana in the state.

​Governor Jack Markell on Friday signed SB 17 into law, making it legal for Delaware residents with certain serious medical conditions to use medical marijuana with a doctor’s recommendation.

The bill had bipartisan sponsors and support in the Legislature. This makes Delaware the 16th state, along with the District of Columbia, to pass an effective medical marijuana law.
The law goes into effect on July 1 and will permit people diagnosed with cancer, HIV/AIDS, multiple sclerosis, decompensated cirrhosis, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), agitation of Alzheimer’s disease, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), intractable nausea, severe seizures, severe and persistent muscle spasms, wasting syndrome, and severe debilitating pain that has not responded to other treatments, or for which treatments produced serious side effects, to possess up to six ounces of marijuana without fear of arrest.

Photo: Robert Craig/The News Journal
Sen. Margaret Rose Henry: “Delaware legislators have been listening to patients and families in community meetings and the stories they’ve heard changed minds and hearts”

​Medical marijuana backers have filed another bill in the Delaware Legislature to legalize medicinal use of cannabis.

This is the third straight year that Senate Major Whip Margaret Rose Henry has introduced medical marijuana legislation, reports The Associated Press. Henry said she is optimistic for the bill’s chances this year.
“Delaware legislators have been listening to patients and families in community meetings and the stories they’ve heard changed minds and hearts,” Sen. Henry said. “Legislators have begun to understand the very real need for legislative action to allow this treatment option without in any way undermining law enforcement or the prosecution of those engaged in the recreational use of marijuana.”
Rep. Helene Keeley, the House co-sponsor, said that unlike California and 13 other medical marijuana states — but like neighboring New Jersey — the bill would not permit patients to grow their own marijuana. This is a disturbing trend with recent marijuana laws — it’s as if there is some sort of competition to see which state can make a medical marijuana law the least friendly and useful to patients.
Senate Minority Leader Gary Simpson (R-Milford) said he is undecided about SB 17, the medical marijuana bill, and claimed he is “concerned” that marijuana is a “gateway drug” that “leads to the use of more dangerous drugs.” I think we can pretty much give up on hearing anything intelligent on from that guy on the subject of cannabis.,


​Delaware, ​”The First State,” could become the 16th to legalize medical marijuana.

State Senator Margaret Rose Henry and three Senate co-sponsors on Tuesday introduced SB 17 in the Delaware State Senate, calling for a common sense approach to providing compassionate care for seriously ill patients seeking relief with medical marijuana. Rep. Helene Keeley is the prime sponsor in the House, with eight co-sponsoring House members on the bill.

Montel Williams, a popular former talk show host and multiple sclerosis patient, attended Tuesday’s legislative session to meet with lawmakers and the Governor to urge them to support SB 17. Neuropathic pain associated with MS is one of the ailments for which marijuana has been shown to provide relief.
Passage of the bill would allow Delaware patients suffering from several devastating illnesses to receive medical marijuana with a doctor’s recommendation.