On the one year anniversary of the signing of New York’s medical marijuana law, patients and families will gather in front of Governor Cuomo’s New York City Office to urge him to sign a new bill that would create an emergency access program so that critically ill patients could access medical marijuana as soon as possible. Since the medical marijuana law passed a year ago, not one patient in New York has been able to access medical marijuana and at least four children, who could have likely benefited from it, have tragically died while waiting to obtain this much-needed medicine.
Compassionate Care NY will hold a press conference urging Governor Cuomo to sign the emergency access bill.
What: Press conference and rally urging Cuomo to create emergency access to medical marijuana
- Representatives of the Drug Policy Alliance
- Dr. Richard Carlton, physician and caregiver
- Elaine Smith, mother of a child with severe epilepsy
- Nancy Rivera, four-time cancer survivor
- Wanda Hernandez, person living with HIV/AIDS
When: Tuesday, July 7, 12:30 PM
Where: Outside Governor Cuomo’s NYC Offices; 633 Third Avenue, New York, NY
Since last July, advocates have been pressuring the Cuomo Administration to create an interim emergency access program for patients who may not survive the eighteen months or longer that the Governor has said he needs to get the full medical marijuana program up and running. According the Department of Health, the earliest the program would be operational is January 2016.
After the Governor’s Office failed to take action, advocates turned to the legislature. In June, with overwhelming bipartisan support, both houses of the legislature passed A.7060 (Gottfried) / S.5086 (Griffo), a bill that would direct the state to establish a program to help critically ill patients obtain emergency access to medical marijuana as soon as possible. It also instructs the state to issue patient cards to critically ill patients who qualify as soon as possible making it clear that they are medical marijuana patients and affording them some protection from law enforcement and child protective services. On Tuesday, advocates will rally outside the Governor’s office to urge him to sign the bill or take other action to help patients in desperate need.