Matthew Bratcher, Executive Director, believes that this is also the time to push for a decriminalization bill alongside a medical cannabis bill. "Decriminalization policies are vitally important for ensuring access to patients. The continued criminalization of cannabis use is out-of-step with the views of the majority of adults in Kentucky. The ongoing enforcement of cannabis prohibition is a financial burden to taxpayers, an encroachment upon civil liberties, and engenders disrespect for the law. Decriminalization policy reform can also protect medical cannabis patients from workplace and tenant discrimination."
Julie Cantwell, Kentucky Moms for Medical Cannabis, said "I was very excited to hear the Governor speak up for Ky patients and equally excited to see bi-partisan applause from lawmakers in the audience." Her co-founder, Kristin Wilcox said, "Governor Beshear has delivered on his campaign promise to help suffering Kentucky patients, time and time again. For years now, we have met with legislators from every district and corner of this state— being both hopeful and heartbroken by dormant support. Actions always speak louder though. The governor has been instrumental in this movement, leading by example, with true engagement and compassion for his fellow Kentuckians. Not only are we grateful, we are inspired."
Kentucky NORML strongly urges our Senate leadership to move on a patient-centric medical cannabis program, as well as pass a results-driven decriminalization bill. You can send your Kentucky Senator an email voicing your support here.
The Transcript of the Governor's statement:
"Treating people right also dictates that this session and this General Assembly finally legalize medical cannabis. "
"See, far too many Kentuckians are suffering from life-threatening and chronic conditions, like our veterans with PTSD or Kentuckians with cancer. That's why I issued my executive order. It allows people to get the help they need without fearing a misdemeanor.
I recently heard the story of Chasity Harney. Chasity is a mother and wife from Kenton County, who in 2019 was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer at the age of 40. In addition to the surgeries, chemotherapy, radiation treatments, Chasity was also prescribed in her words, 'Every form of pain pill there was'. But like a lot of people, Chasity found the medications brought her little relief.
Chasity found real relief from medicinal cannabis oil. Chasity could not be here with us tonight, but I want to thank her for her bravery and sharing her story with the Commonwealth. It's going to help a lot of people.
Let's pass medical cannabis for Chasity and every person in need!"