Press Release  | 06/11/2014

TODAY: Faith Leaders, Patients, Caregivers, and Healthcare Providers Travel to Albany to Urge Passage of Comprehensive Medical Marijuana Legislation - the Compassionate Care Act

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2 PM: Prayer Vigil for Suffering Patients and Families to be held outside of Senate Chambers;
Faith Leaders to Call on Senate Leaders to Take Action before June 19th

Faith Leaders and Patient Advocates Available for Interviews

Albany – Today,  Faith leaders from across the state and patients living with cancer, multiple sclerosis, severe seizure disorders, and other serious, debilitating medical conditions will gather in Albany for an advocacy day.  Traveling from across the state, patients will demand that the New York State Legislature pass the Compassionate Care Act -- A.6357-C (Gottfried) / S.4406-C (Savino) – before the end of this year’s legislative session on June 19th. Faith leaders will join the patients in calling for the Senate to act with moral integrity and compassion and to pass legislation to alleviate needless suffering.  The bill would create the nation’s most tightly regulated medical marijuana program and allow patients with serious and debilitating conditions to access a small amount of marijuana under the supervision of their healthcare provider.

What:  Compassionate Care NY Advocacy Day and Faith Leader Vigil
When:  Wednesday, June 11th. Advocacy day: 11 – 4. Vigil: 2 p.m.
Location:  New York State Capitol, Outside Senate Chamber, 3rd Floor, Albany, NY

Who: Patients, Faith Leaders, and Healthcare Providers including:

  • Bishop Michael Clarke, leader of Redeemer’s Tabernacle in Brooklyn, NY
  • Reverend Emma Loftin-Woods, grandmother and former caregiver to cancer stricken husband from Yonkers, NY
  • Nancy Rivera, grandmother from Troy and four-time cancer survivor
  • Eileen Konieczny, RN, oncology nurse from New Paltz with more than twenty years of bedside nursing experience

The Compassionate Care Act has strong bipartisan support across the state. Thousands of patients and community leaders have taken action on this issue, generating thousands of calls and letters to Leadership. Momentum continues to build as more NYS Senators and Assembly Members from both sides of the aisle have signed on in support. Last week Assemblywoman Mallotakis (R,C,I-Brooklyn, Staten Island) publicly announced her support for the legislation, being the first New York City based Republican official to do so. Her sponsorship follows Senator George Maziarz (R – Newfane), Senator Mark Grisanti (R, IP – Buffalo),  and Senator Joe Robach (R, C, IP - Rochester) signing on as Co-sponsors and three additional Republicans --- Senator John Bonacic,  (R-Middletown), Senator Tim O’Mara (R, C – Big Flats, Elmira), and Senator Larkin (R, C, Cornwall-on Hudson)  all expressing their public support for the Compassionate Care Act.

Patients and caregivers intend to maintain a strong presence in Albany until the end of session as they demand legislators take up the issue.

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

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