Delaware Passes Medical Marijuana Law
Gov. Markell Makes Delaware 16th State to Allow Medical Use of Marijuana
DOVER, DELAWARE – Today, Gov. Jack Markell signed SB 17 into law, making it legal for Delaware resi-dents with certain serious medical conditions to use medical marijuana with a doctor’s recommendation. The
With more than 124,000 members and supporters nationwide, the Marijuana Policy Project is the largest marijuana policy reform organization in the United States. For more information, please visit www.mpp.org.
Bill had bipartisan sponsors and support in the legislature. This makes Delaware the 16th state, along with the District of Columbia, to pass an effective medical marijuana law.
The law goes into effect on July 1 and will permit people diagnosed with cancer, HIV/AIDS, multiple sclerosis, decompensated cirrhosis, amy-otrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), agita-tion of Alzheimer’s disease, PTSD, intractable nausea, severe seizures, severe and persistent muscle spasms, wasting syndrome, and severe debili-tating pain that has not responded to other treatments or for which other treatments produced serious side effects to possess up to six ounces of marijuana without fear of arrest. Qualified patients will not be able to cultivate their own medicine, but they will be able to obtain medical mari-juana from state-licensed compassion centers regulated by the Delaware Department of Health and Social Services, which will also issue med-ical marijuana ID cards to patients who receive a recommendation from their doctor. Public use of marijuana and driving under the influence are prohibited.
“There are so many people in Delaware who are suffering unimag-inable pain that this will help, and we want to be able to do what we can to provide much-needed relief for those citizens,” said Senate Majority Whip Margaret Rose Henry, D-Wilmington East, who sponsored the legislation. “I am very grateful that so many of my colleagues were able to look past the myths surrounding marijuana and into the eyes and hearts of those who were crying out for our help. Needless to say, I am profoundly grateful to Gov. Markell for his sup-port of this important legislation.”
“Today is an amazing victory for seri-ously ill Delaware patients, who have been waiting a very long time for the chance to use the medicine they need without fear,” said Noah Mamber, legislative analyst for the Marijuana Policy Project, who lobbied and mobilized patients, professionals, and grassroots activists in support of the bill. “SB17 is the most comprehen-sive, tightly-written medical marijua-na bill in the country, and with this vote, the Delaware Legislature proved that compassion is not a red or a blue issue. It’s a human issue.” Chris McNeely, a Dagsboro National Guard veteran and chronic pain patient with severe wasting syn-drome, said, “Until this law was passed, I was afraid to use medical marijuana, even though it helped me in the past, because if I was arrested and put in jail, they could not proper-ly care for me, and I could actually die. I am so happy I will be able to get legal relief soon.”