Pubdate: Mon, 16 Nov 2009
Source: Northwest Herald (IL)
Copyright: 2009 Northwest Herald Newspapers
Author: Dan Linn


Regarding the article "Nurses discuss health care reform with state
legislators" (Northwest Herald, Nov. 11), I was wondering whether
there was any discussion of the pending statewide medical marijuana
legislation, Senate Bill 1381 and House Bill 2514?

The Illinois Nurses Association officially endorsed the need for a
medical marijuana law in 2004 and surely the legality of medical
marijuana is worth discussing with these lawmakers. Especially when so
many are concerned with the costs of health care, an option that has
no documented overdose fatalities and would be drastically cheaper
than most pharmaceutical medicines merits some sort of mentioning.

I do know that there are very sick Illinois citizens who are already
using marijuana per their doctor's recommendation. Plus, I do know
that Senators Pam Althoff and Dan Duffy voted against SB 1381 and
could not find enough compassion to support patients. Those senators
ought to be ashamed of those votes.

Illinois lawmakers need to protect those who could benefit from using
marijuana, such as those undergoing chemotherapy treatment, living
with HIV/AIDS, multiple sclerosis, epilepsy, ALS or any of the other
specifically listed qualifying conditions in the legislation. Illinois
needs a medical marijuana program because patients are not criminals.

Dan Linn

Executive director, Illinois Cannabis Patients Association
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