Staff reporter - Fox43.com
5:23 PM EST, December 2, 2009
Lawmakers, patients, and health experts gather at the state capitol to push for House Bill 1393. The proposal would give seriously ill patients across the state access to marijuana.
"With having progressive MS, the drugs I was on did damage to my heart. At the time I didn't have the choice of medical marijuana, I wish I did," said Sandra Crue, suffering with Multiple Sclerosis.
Crue strongly supports the bill. She says many of the legal drugs on the market just don't help.
"When the spasms come on, the pain is incredible, it is absolutely incredible," said Crue.
John Ray Wilson was diagnosed with MS in 2002. A year later, he began growing and using marijuana.
"It helps me with pain management and I have a lot of muscle spasms also, it definitely helps with that," said Wilson.
Wilson was caught with the drug in New Jersey and is facing a possible 20 years in prison. While he waits for a trial there, he is joining in the fight being lead by State Representative Mark Cohen from Philadelphia.
"This bill is not about young students getting high, this is about the sick getting healed," said Cohen.
The bill is modeled after similar laws in 13 other states. Patients would be required to have a written recommendation from a doctor, among other strict guidelines.
Besides the medical benefits, supporters of the bill say it would generate about $25 million in state revenue a year from Marijuana taxes and fees.
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