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Legalizing Medical Marijuana in NYS
Written By: Asha McKenzie
STATEWIDE (WENY) -- It's do or die for the Compassionate Care Act in New York State.
Both the State Senate and Assembly's negotiations on whether to legalize medical marijuana is due by midnight in order for the bill to be voted on before the legislative session ends on Thursday.
According to a recent Sienna College Poll - 62 percent of New Yorkers support the Compassionate Care Act over the 33 percent that are opposed.
So, will it be yay or nay for legalizing medical marijuana in New York State?
Governor Andrew Cuomo has voiced concerns about the medicinal use of this popular recreational drug.
He says he will only sign the bill if the drug is properly regulated.
He wants to ban smoking it, cut down on the number of chronic illnesses that are listed to be treated with marijuana.
He also wants to change the policy of a patient receiving 2.5 ounces of pot every 30 days to doctors prescribing the drug in one month doses.
Christie Speciale, Executive Director at the Tioga County Council on Alcoholism and Substance abuse says making it legal is sending the wrong message and could possibly raise the addiction rate.
"Similar to prescription drug abuse, when people are prescribed opiates or narcotics and they geT an excess of medication then they are selling it on the streets to make extra money," said Speciale. "Here at TCCASA, we are definitely holding on to what we believe is marijuana being a harmful and dangerous drug."
On the Compassionate Care NY website, Doctors throughout New York State share their support for the act.
Dr. Craig Blinderman of Columbia University Medical Center says "It's disappointing that I cannot provide my patients with a therapy that I know can benefit them."
Dr. Sunil Aggarwal of New York University Medical Center says
"As a doctor I feel helpless when I can't give my patients an effective treatment for pain."