Detroit could decriminalize possession of small amounts of Marijuana
Category: Medical Marijuana | Posted on Fri, November, 2nd 2012 by THCFinder
A proposal that will appear on Detroit ballots Tuesday could partially decriminalize the possession of small amounts of marijuana. But how it would affect policing in the city is still up for debate.
Proposal M would amend a 1984 Detroit city ordinance in order to exempt adults over the age of 21 from being prosecuted for the possession of less than an ounce of marijuana on private property.
In June former Detroit Police Chief Ralph Godbee -- who resigned last month due to a sex scandal -- said even if the measure passed the department might continue to enforce existing state and federal laws outlawing marijuana possession.
"A city ordinance can't trump that," he told MLive. "So that would be the priority for us. If you look at the amount of devastation that substance abuse has caused in the inner city, anything that makes it easier to access that, fundamentally I'm opposed to it."
Detroit police had no immediate comment on how the proposal would affect policing in the city.
"The Detroit Police Department is aware of this proposal, and will be ready to address this ordinance, if it should pass," Sgt. Eren L. Stephens, a DPD spokeswoman, told the Huffington Post.
The Coalition for a Safer Detroit, which put the measure on the ballot, says its passage would encourage Detroit police to focus more of their resources on serious crimes. A statement on the group's website argues that de-prioritizing marijuana possession as a crime would save the police and courts a considerable amount time and money:
Read more: http://www.huffingtonpost.com
Voters take up marijuana laws in 6 states this election
Category: Medical Marijuana | Posted on Thu, November, 1st 2012 by THCFinder
LOWELL, Mass. - Karen Hawkes was just 38 when a stroke robbed her of almost everything.
Hawkes, from the seaside community of Rowley just north of Boston, was forced to abandon her law-enforcement career. Chronic pain made it difficult to care for her two young children.
Pharmaceutical painkillers left her mind foggy following that 2006 stroke, but Hawkes eventually discovered something that eased her pain and allowed her to function: marijuana.
Rowley, and many others who suffer from chronic pain, are paying close attention to the Nov. 6 election, when six states, including Massachusetts, will vote on ballot initiatives related to marijuana use.
In Massachusetts, Ballot Question 3 seeks to make the state the 17th in the nation to allow marijuana to be used for medicinal purposes. No state has legalized marijuana, but that could soon change.
Polls suggest Washington could be the first state to wholly legalize marijuana. Voters will be asked to make the drug available for sale to people 21 and over at state-licensed marijuana stores.
In Colorado, a ballot measure seeks to legalize limited possession of marijuana. The measure would allow people to grow up to six marijuana plants in their homes and also legalize marijuana sales at regulated retail stores.
Similar legalization is on the ballot in Oregon, but support for that measure lags in the polls.
Voters in Arkansas, meanwhile, will decide if marijuana can be used for medical purposes. Montana is considering a measure that would tighten its existing medical marijuana law.
Read more: http://www.sgvtribune.com
Colorado Woman Speaks of Benefits of Medical Marijuana
Category: Medical Marijuana | Posted on Wed, October, 31st 2012 by THCFinder
Dispensaries offering medical marijuana in different forms, like edible puppy chow, have cropped up all over Colorado.
"I've tried all different kinds of therapies and drugs."
After dealing with chronic pain from fibromyalgia for a quarter of a century, Terri Robnett has finally found the closest thing to a cure yet.
"I'm working and function and without pain," she says. "I never could have done that before without cannabis, I couldn't. I enjoy life"
But she has to be discreet about how and when she uses.
"When you tell people you use medical marijuana there's always this kind of look, like 'Do you really or are you just using it to get high?'"
Of the roughly 100,000 people on Colorado's medical marijuana registry, the average patient age is 41 and severe pain is the most common reason for a red card certification.
"Sure, there are people who might not be legitimate, but I think the vast majority are," she says.
Terri hopes eventually the stoner stereotype will cease to be an issue.
"I can have a life now," she says. "I'm not walking around stoned or lethargic."
And because she recalls what her days were like before she could rely on cannabis, she's stepping out from the smoke shrouded shadows and encouraging Arkansans to look at the big picture beyond pot.
"It makes me sad to think of that there are people in Arkansas, you kow they're all over and they need this -- they need this help," she says.
Patients like Terri often say they opt for edibles because they can be more discreet.
Colorado is also working toward legalizing all marijuana, which could make a difference on how open people can be about their treatment options.
Detroiters prepare to vote on marijuana measure
DETROIT (AP) — Detroiters are preparing to vote on a proposal that would decriminalize possession of small amounts of marijuana.
The Detroit News reports (http://bit.ly/Vz30hR ) the ballot question, known as Proposal M, would allow adults over age 21 to possess less than an ounce of marijuana on personal property without criminal prosecution.
It's one of six issues facing city voters Nov. 6.
Proponents say Detroit no longer has the police resources to go after people using small amounts of marijuana at home. Opponents say it signals the city is soft on crime.
Detroit is struggling with high crime and a budget that's led to police cutbacks.
Michigan voters in 2008 approved the use of marijuana for medical reasons, but parts of the law are being challenged in court.
A Judge in Montana again suspends medical marijuana law
HELENA, Mont. (AP) — A Helena judge is again blocking the state from enforcing some provisions of the 2011 medical marijuana law.
The decision from District Judge Jim Reynolds comes a week before voters will decide whether to keep the new law, or reject it in favor of the original voter-approved 2004 initiative.
Reynolds said in an order last week that he re-evaluated the tougher new law in wake of new instructions from the Montana Supreme Court. The high court last month overturned Reynolds' initial decision blocking parts of the law.
Reynolds said he will again suspend enforcement of the law while fully evaluating the different test of constitutionality.
The ruling suspends the ban on medical marijuana providers receiving money for their product, and other provisions that advocates argue essentially shut the industry down.
Cannabis spray can help cancer patients cope with pain
Researchers are testing a cannabis mouth spray that they say can relieve pain in cancer patients who do not respond well to traditional painkillers like morphine.
The spray called Sativex is being trialled as evidence mounts for medicinal use of cannabis in people with cancer and multiple sclerosis.
Dr Brian Le, a palliative care specialist at the Royal Melbourne Hospital, said four Australian hospitals were participating in the study which involves about 300 patients in 20 locations around the world.
The trial is the last of several studies required for manufacturer GW Pharmaceuticals to try to license the drug in Australia, the Sydney Morning Herald reported.
A spokeswoman for Novartis, the company employed by GW Pharmaceuticals to commercialise the drug in Australia, said it was also working with the Therapeutic Goods Administration to make Sativex available to patients with multiple sclerosis who suffer from uncontrolled muscle spasticity.
No pharmaceutical drugs based on cannabis are currently licensed for use in Australia. Since 2004, health authorities in the UK, Canada and Spain have licensed Sativex for patients with MS, a neurological condition that causes painful muscle stiffness in about 90 per cent of sufferers.
While cannabis has been strongly associated with mental illness, Le said phase one and two trials of Sativex in more than 400 cancer patients found it relieved pain with few side effects, the most common being nausea.
He said psychiatric side effects were very rare in the doses used and that patients did not report feeling "stoned".
"Our experience is that pain improves and the patients actually feel better. They're more able to do daily activities, sleep better through the night without pain and think clearly, so instances of feeling confused or 'out of it' are low," he said.
"They don't feel better because they're stoned, they feel better because their pain is well controlled," he said.
The drug works by targeting cannabinoid receptors in the brain.
"Cannabinoid receptors are like morphine receptors in the body, they mediate how the pain is sensed and how that pain message is transmitted to the brain and therefore perceived, so it reduces the conduction of that message to say there is pain occurring," he said.
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