Proposed Bill Would Make Illinois Medical Marijuana Program Permanent
In the past couple of years, there has been a surge of different states and even different countries that have legalized marijuana for medicinal purposes. In the United States, there are 33 states, including the District of Columbia, that have legalized medical marijuana. In addition, 10 of those states have legalized the use of marijuana for recreational purposes. Medical marijuana has been deemed an effective and popular way to help treat and alleviate symptoms of certain medical issues. Illinois is included as one of the 33 states that have legalized medical marijuana, though the program is currently not a permanent fixture. A new bill would change that.
Current Medical Marijuana Program
In 2013, Illinois passed the Compassionate Use of Medical Cannabis Pilot Program Act which legalized the growth, use, and sale of marijuana for medicinal uses throughout the state. In 2016, a bill was passed to extend the program until 2020 because of initial delays in getting the program started and early indications of the benefits it offered to patients. Currently , there are nearly 58,000 medical marijuana patients in Illinois, including over 400 patients under the age of 18. The medical cannabis program allows patients who have at least one qualifying condition (such as HIV/AIDS, cancer, glaucoma and Parkinson’s disease) to purchase 2.5 ounces of flower, edibles, or other cannabis-infused oils and concentrates every two weeks.
Bill Aims to Make Program Permanent
An Illinois state representative has proposed a bill that would expand and also make the pilot program a permanent fixture in Illinois. According to the bill, the list of qualifying conditions would expand to include chronic pain, autism, migraines, irritable bowel syndrome, and many others. The bill would also allow veterans who see doctors through the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to qualify for medical marijuana as an alternative to opioids, which they currently cannot do because marijuana is still illegal under federal law.
A Joliet Drug Possession Defense Lawyer Can Help
If you do not completely follow the rules, you can end up getting yourself into trouble for using or possessing medical marijuana. Drug charges are taken quite seriously in Illinois, and the consequences for illegal marijuana possession can be severe. If you are facing drug charges, you need an experienced Will County drug possession defense attorney on your side. At the Law Offices of Jack L. Zaremba, P.C., we can help you plead your case and avoid a conviction at all costs. Call our office today at 815-740-4025 to schedule a free consultation.