During his State of the Commonwealth Address delivered Wednesday evening, Democratic Governor Andy Beshear called for the legalization of medical cannabis in Kentucky:

“Treating people right also dictates that in this session, this General Assembly finally legalize medical cannabis.

Far too many Kentuckians are suffering from life-threatening and chronic conditions, like our veterans with PTSD, or Kentuckians with cancer.

That is 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 surgeries, chemotherapy and 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 Chasity for her bravery and for sharing her story with the commonwealth. It’s going to help a lot of people. Let’s pass medical cannabis for Chasity and for every other person out there suffering!”

Treating people right also dictates that in this session, this General Assembly finally legalize medical cannabis.

Governor Andy Beshear (D-KY)

Commenting on the governor’s address, Kentucky NORML Deputy Director Lauren Bratcher, said, “this is an exciting step toward legalizing medical cannabis in Kentucky and we commend Governor Beshear for his support on this important issue. When Kentucky NORML met with the governor last week, he pledged his support for medical cannabis legalization, and with his declaration at the closing of his State of the Commonwealth speech, he delivered. “

Matthew Bratcher, Executive Director of Kentucky NORML, believes now is also the time to push for decriminalization alongside medical cannabis. “Decriminalization policies are critical to reducing unnecessary law enforcement interactions for medical cannabis patients. The continued criminalization of marijuana 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.”

Kentucky NORML strongly urges Senate leadership to advance legislation establishing a patient-centric medical cannabis program and decriminalizing the possession of personal use amounts of marijuana.  Contact your Kentucky Senator in support of this effort.

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