Source: London Free Press (Canada) Contact: http://www.canoe.ca/LondonFreePress/home.html Pubdate: April 17, 1998 Author: John Miner -- Free Press Reporter CRUSADER FOR MEDICAL POT USE FED UP WITH HASSLE, EXPENSE Lynn Harichy says she's sorry she ever started her campaign to legalize marijuana for medical use. The 36-year-old Londoner with multiple sclerosis says she's found the campaign tiring and expensive. "I'm just getting tired of the whole issue. I just want it to go away," she said. Harichy is charged with marijuana possession after protesting the law by trying to light a marijuana cigarette on the steps of the London police station. She expected to be charged and planned to challenge the marijuana law in court. While her lawyer, Osgoode Hall law professor Alan Young, has offered to waive his fee, Harichy said it will still cost her $20,000 to bring in expert witnesses. It is money she said she doesn't have. "I didn't know it was going to cost this much," she said. "I really thought that all I needed to do was tell my story and that would be the end of the legal part. How naive I am. This issue is a full-time job without pay." A benefit to raise money is being organized for April 25 at 8 p.m. at the Embassy Hotel in London, she said. Harichy said smoking marijuana relieves constant pain in the back of her head and down her spine and the uncontrollable spasms. The drugs that she has been prescribed have had severe side-effects, she said. "When I use marijuana the worst side-effect I have found is the legal system," she said. While Harichy said she is tired of the fight, she still plans to open a medical marijuana buyers' club in London, which will supply marijuana to people who have a medical certificate from their doctors. She said the idea has drawn a lot of support from London doctors, who have been signing the certificates for their patients. In March, Harichy met with federal Health Minister Allan Rock in Tillsonburg to urge him to press for changes in the law. Rock said he took seriously Harichy's plea to legalize marijuana for medical use. He said he and Justice Minister Anne McLellan have asked senior civil servants to review the implications of legalizing marijuana for medical purposes and hoped to have a response for Harichy within months. Copyright (c) 1998 The London Free Press a division of Sun Media Corporation.