Press Release  | 12/04/2013

December 5th: Assembly Health Committee to Hold Hearings in Buffalo on Medical Marijuana in Advance of 2014 Legislative Session

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Western NY Patients and Families Will Join Medical Experts in Calling on Legislature to Take Immediate Action to Pass Legislation

Buffalo – On Thursday, December 5th, dozens of patients living with cancer, multiple sclerosis, severe seizure disorders, and other serious, debilitating medical conditions will gather in Buffalo for a hearing of the NY State Assembly Health Committee.  They will travel from across Western and Central New York to demand that the New York State legislature pass the Compassionate Care Act -- A.6357-A (Gottfried) / S.4406-A (Savino) -- immediately. The bill, which would create one of the nation’s most tightly regulated medical marijuana programs, would allow seriously ill patients access to a small amount of marijuana under the supervision of their healthcare provider.

What: New York State Assembly Health Committee Hearing on the Compassionate Care Act, New York’s Medical Marijuana Bill

When: Thursday, December 5th at 10 AM

Location:

Common Council Chambers, 13th Fl
Buffalo City Hall
65 Niagara Square
Buffalo, NY

Who (dozens of patient and providers, including):

  • Susan Rusinko, mother from Auburn, living with MS
  • Mark Williams, father of a son with Lennox Gastaut Syndrome from Lockport
  • Paige Figi, mother whose child with Dravet’s syndrome is being successfully treated with medical cannabis in Colorado   and was profiled in Dr. Sanjay Gupta’s CNN documentary, Weed
  • Rev. Eugene Pierce, Buffalo NAACP and caregiver of a family members with MS
  • gabriel sayegh, Drug Policy Alliance

Physicians in every state bordering New York – except Pennsylvania – have the ability to recommend this effective and relatively safe treatment for their patients. Twenty states and the District Columbia have passed laws creating legal access to medical marijuana for seriously ill patients, and New Jersey recently expanded its medical marijuana program to cover children who suffer from severe seizure disorders.

Earlier this year, the New York State Assembly passed the bill with bipartisan vote of 99-41, the widest margin of the four times the bill has been passed in that chamber, but the bill was never taken up for a vote in the Senate.  Patients and healthcare providers gathering in Buffalo hope that legislators will take up the issue when they return to Albany in January.

Contact:  Tony Newman 646-335-5384 or gabriel sayegh 646-335-2264

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