Medical Marijuana Expected to Come Up in Alabama’s January Legislative Session

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Medical marijuana is legal in 20 states and the District of Columbia.  It could be legal in Alabama, if one lawmaker has her way. Rep. Patricia Todd (D-Birmingham) is planning to push a bill that, if passed could legalize the drug for medical purposes. Preston LaRue said this bill could be a step in the right direction “It’s a great idea as long as it’s used properly for people who need it. I think they need any relief they can get.  ”

Darin Brooks agreed, but he also had some concerns, “It will be beneficial for people really in need of it for chronic pain.  However, it will need to be controlled very tightly. ”

The bill would allow the use of a substance called Cannabidiol or CBD. It comes from a marijuana plant and it’s supposed to provide a wide range of therapeutic benefits. Tiny Turner who has been a nurse for 19 years said she‘s not convinced of these medical benefits. “I think there are a lot of medication out there that’s already prescribed that would be good,” said Turner.

State Representative Paul Lee of Houston County agreed with Turner. He said there are other alternatives out there, which could have a positive effect on people dealing with severe illness. Lee, who also serves on the Alabama House Health Committee said the biggest problems associated with legalizing medical marijuana are the potential costs and the concerns of abuse.“When you start legalizing something, you bet the next step there will be people wanting Medicaid to pay for it.   At this point in time I think it could open up a great door of abuse. “

Alabama is no stranger to this issue. Similar bills failed to gain steam in past legislative sessions, but the session that starts in January could be the one that gives the bill new ground.

Medical Marijuana Expected to Come Up in Alabama’s January Legislative Session

Article by Jamiese Price for