NY MMJ Patients Gather In Albany For Emergency Access
Almost exactly one far after New York State legislature passed a medical marijuana bill, MMJ patients, their families and opposers to the A.7060 (Gottfried) / S.5086 (Griffo) bill gathered in Albany to demand emergency access to medical marijuana as soon as possible. To this day, there has not been one patient in the state of New York that has received medical marijuana and sadly, four children could have benefitted from medical marijuana but have since passed away.
Assembly Minority Leader and bill co-sponsor, Brian Kolb, recognizes there is a great responsibility to provide medicine to those in need. “Children and families deserve every effort to get life-saving remedies now, rather than wait for the wheels of government to turn. Implementing the state’s medical marijuana program is a complicated process that will take time," he said. "Patients in pain should not be forced to wait for help they can access today.”
Medical marijuana advocates have been pressuring the Cuomo Administration to implement an emergency access program for patients. Governor Cuomo has said he will need at least eighteen months to get the full program up and running however, there needs to be a program in place for those who may not make it that long.
The original medical marijuana bill for New York State included an emergency access program, however, that provision was removed as per the Governor's Office during bill negotiations. The new bill will instruct the state to establish an emergency program for critically ill patients as well as issue patient cards to critically ill patients who qualify as soon as possible.