Medical marijuana bill proposed in Fla.

March 15th, 2011 by Staff

TALLAHASSEE, Florida (WALA) – A Florida Democrat is proposing the state’s first ever bill to legalize the medical use of cannabis. Rep. Jeff Clemens proposal includes letting Floridians weigh in on the issue by placing House Joint Resolution 1407 on the ballot.

The bill states medicinal cannabis can only be used under certain conditions, including a physicians prescription, diagnosis of a debilitating condition, and restriction of use to places that are not “in plain view of, or in a place open to, the general public.”

The bill does not require insurance companies to cover medicinal cannabis, or employers to accommodate use in the work place.

A recent poll by Gov. Rick Scott found nearly 60 percent of Floridians support the use of cannabis for medical purposes.

“There is no good reason for us to allow people to use synthetic drugs like oxycontin, methodone, percocet, and Prozac, but ban them from using a natural, safer drug,” Clemens said.

“Study after study has shown that the use of medicinal cannabis can help those suffering from debilitating diseases. Who could be against that?”

Rep. Clemens announced his bill proposal Thursday surrounded by several health care professionals and people with debilitative conditions.

Among the participants was Cathy Jordan, 60, of Bradenton. She has lived with ALS or Lou Gehrig’s Disease for 25 years and she says cannabis helps her manage the disease.

“Cannabis is a neuro-protector, anti-oxidant, and anti-inflammatory,” said Jordan.

“I am here today to help patients and the families of patients with neuromuscular diseases and brain disorders to educate themselves on cannabis.”

Fifteen other states have passed variations of Rep. Clemens’ proposal. It has generated hundreds of millions of dollars in new private industry revenue and millions of dollars in state tax revenue.

But Rep. Clemens says the true focus is to provide natural relief to people who are dealing with difficult medical issues.

“We have a fantastic opportunity to provide relief to thousand of Floridians,” Clemens said.

“It would be madness to not move forward with letting the people of Florida vote on this issue.”


3 Responses

  1. Charles

    I support this bill all the way.Jeff Clemens deserves credit for bringing this bill up.Just think,if people had access to something like medical marijuana,maybe people wouldn’t be running to these pill mills that Florida has become so famous for.Marijuana is not addictive like alot of these painkilling pills.I live in St.Petersburg,Florida and there are alot of people here who deal with alot of medical issues.Medical marijuana could be very helpful for some of these people.Like it was already mentioned,14 other states have already legalized medical marijuana.Florida has a great growing season here.This could bring in jobs for Florida and much needed revenue for this state.This is common sense.

  2. steve

    This HJR 1407 bill needs more coverage. So far we’ve gotten dean cannon to send the bill to 3 committees. Lets keep the ball rolling and get this bill to succeed. If we can educate more people on the subject, and people call, send letters, and visit their local reps this will succeed. So far I heard the reps are open to the idea, they just don’t think the public supports it. We need our voices heard so please spend 30 minutes a week urging your reps to support HJR 1407.

  3. jl.morris

    the criminalization of cannabis was founded on racism. don’t believe research henry j anslinger and his testomony to congress. he was no expert of addiction or criminal behavior, but he dad have an uncle that headed the u.s. treasury. that’s how he got his job and whan prohibition failed he was going to lose it. he began a smear campaign methodically using, a then mexican slang term “marihauna” (a cheap grade of tobacco) and refer because people were familiar with hemp (then commonly grown) and cannabis and would not be cooperative in it’s criminalization. thank you

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