State lawmakers want to give veterinarians medical marijuana cards
Local state lawmakers have introduced legislation for veterans so they can obtain medical marijuana cards.
Bill sponsors, veterans dealing with pain and PTSD become dependent on opioids
Medical marijuana is a safer treatment option, they say
The idea is to offer recovering veterans a different option than opioids and, if this legislation is passed, it would be the first medical marijuana discount offered in Florida.
Following the legalization approved by medical marijuana voters in 2016, a growing number of Florida veterans turn to the drug to treat their conditions. Some say that medical marijuana is easier to obtain and consume than opioid-based drugs, in addition to being less addictive.
Two Democratic legislators, state senator Janet Cruz and the state representative. Adam Hattersley, joined to present this legislation. They say that too many Florida veterans are becoming dependent on opioids to treat chronic conditions related to their military service.
In the words of the sponsor of the Senate bill, Sen. Janet Cruz (Tampa Democrat), "providing free medical marijuana cards for disabled veterans in the service is a benefit that I hope will foster alternative treatments and help address the opioid crisis. facing veterans. "
Of the 1.5 million Florida veterans, a considerable number, totaling tens of thousands, have developed service-related disabilities ranging from nerve damage to post-traumatic stress disorder. If this happens, everyone would be eligible to obtain or renew their medical marijuana card for free.
Several other states already offer similar discounts.
And Hattersley, a veteran of the Iraq war, says he has seen the recovery of wounded soldiers on active duty.
He feels it is his responsibility to help these service members get any medication they need to get relief.
Advocates of patients with medical marijuana generally support the legislation. They say it will allow Florida's medical marijuana patient population to grow even faster than it already is.
Under current state regulations (which are being challenged in court), licenses to grow and dispense medical marijuana are limited to a handful of pocket companies. As the patient population grows, there will be more licenses available.
The bills were submitted for consideration during the 2020 legislative session, which begins in January.