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The Next Step For Medical Marijuana Essay

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Washington was once of the first states to enact medical marijuana laws, but over time has allowed it laws to become stagnant and not accomplish what its original intent was, to increase the quality of life of its patients. The House and Senate are reviewing the medical marijuana laws, but citizens need to vocalize there support for these initiatives not only at the state level but at there respective local government. Many people may be worried about the expanding coverage of medical marijuana laws but through proper regulation the end result will provide for a safer environment for patients, citizens, and law enforcement, while weeding out the criminal element with ties to drug trafficking.
Medical marijuana has been on the books in Washington state since November 3, 1998. Although it is not technically legal by state law, the current legislation allows for affirmative defense. Under the original law a patient that met the criteria was allowed to possess and grow a 60 days supply with a doctors recommendation. It took 10 years before 60 days supply was defined senate bill 6023 mandated the Department of Health to "adopt rules defining the quantity of marijuana that could reasonably be presumed to be a sixty-day supply for qualifying patients." Washington State Department of Health, responded with a fixed number of 15 plants any stage of growth and up to 24 ounces of useable marijuana. Currently there is a ballot in both the senate and house that will make some much needed changes to current state of medical marijuana in Washington state. It would license dispensaries, allow for grow operations, protect University of Washington in conducting research, prevent eviction based on being a medical marijuana patient and protect p...


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... the dispensaries and growers to ensure the safety of the public and the individuals operating legally. Under the current legal system, there is a lot of barriers between the patient/care givers and law enforcement. With a change in laws this could ease the nerves of many patients and assist the police in preventing crime and creating a more conducive environment from both sides to work together.
The state was one of the first to support patients rights, but they can not let there valiant efforts go to the wayside. Without continued support and improvements of the laws regarding medical marijuana, we will not be able to create a safe atmosphere for both the patients and their fellow citizens. The next step is to provide them a place to acquire the medicine without fear of prosecution and to provide the proper regulations to ensure the patient's and public’s safety.


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