In recent years marijuana, otherwise known as cannabis, has begun to make the transition from recreational drug to valid treatment option for such conditions as cancer, chronic pain, seizures and even Alzheimer’s disease.
Research has found that marijuana can help reduce pain, inflammation and nausea resulting from a variety of conditions such as seizures, multiple sclerosis and chemotherapy treatment.
Marijuana works with an individual’s natural biological processes to cut pain and enhance pain reducing chemicals that are naturally found in the body.
Although the drug is becoming more widely recognized for its medicinal benefits, there still exists much controversy over what forms of the plant are legally usable for medical purposes and how to monitor its distribution.
For example, many patients find that taking cannabis oil cuts their pain without getting them ‘high’, but the current law does not include protections to legitimate patients who use non-smokeable forms of pot.
Another major problem is that medical marijuana is not monitored like FDA-approved medicines which raise questions regarding the drug’s purity and potency.
Since the legalization of medical marijuana in the state of Michigan back in 2008, patients and medical professionals alike have complained about the ambiguous nature of the laws regarding both dispensation, use and possession of the previously-illegal drug.
Much confusion surrounds what is legal and what is not when it comes to the production, sale and use of medical marijuana. Though patients are permitted to grow marijuana for themselves, the law limits exactly how much and what type of receptacles can be used in which to cultivate the medicinal plants.
Matt Herman, a Grand Rapids-based attorney commented to Fox News 17 last spring, “I don’t understand why my clients that have really good spotless records are now becoming felons because they wanted to become involved with a medical marijuana program.”
This past Wednesday, October 7, 2015, the Michigan House approved major changes to the state’s medical marijuana program that would add new regulations to dispensaries, create a tracking system for plants and further clarify usable forms of medical marijuana.
Also discussed on Fox News 17, if approved, House Bill 429 will:
- Further clarify usable forms of medical marijuana
- Create a new state board to license growers and distributors
- Mandate testing in an effort to add more oversight
- End legal uncertainty for both patients and growers
The legislation now moves to the state Senate for consideration. Cannabis activists are currently working to get the bill on the ballot in November of 2016. Marijuana is now legal for personal use in four states: Colorado, Washington, Oregon and Alaska.
Though Michigan is considered one of the more likely Midwest candidates to legalize marijuana, the medical marijuana program is not without flaw which means that full legalization is likely several years away according to Marijuana and the Law.
For a complete list of legally qualifying conditions in Michigan, please see, Marijuana and the Law – Michigan State Laws.
Over to You
What are your thoughts on the legalization of marijuana? Should the drug only be used under controlled medical supervision? Would full legalization result in higher rates of addiction within the general population?
If you find yourself facing legal charges resulting from use of cannabis for medicinal purposes not protected by current laws, please contact my office. We can provide the legal skill and expertise necessary to preserve your record and your reputation.
248-348-7400 or 586-530-1000