New Jersey Governor Chris Christie on Friday said that he would be willing to sign the S2842 bill that would make medical marijuana easier to acquire for sick kids in need of it if New Jersey legislature agrees to make 2 changes to the bill over the weekend.
Those changes would be:
– Remove a provision that would let children qualify for the program with only a doctor’s approval. Current law requires that children receive approval by at least a pediatrician and a psychiatrist.
– Edible forms of marijuana can be dispensed only to minors, not to adult patients.
Today, I am making commonsense recommendations to this legislation to ensure sick children receive the treatment their parents prefer, while maintaining appropriate safeguards. I am calling on the Legislature to reconvene quickly and address these issues so that children in need can get the treatment they need.
As I have repeatedly noted, I believe that parents, and not government regulators, are best suited to decide how to care for their children. Protection of our children remains my utmost concern, and my heart goes out to those children and their families who are suffering with serious illnesses.
Along with edible forms of marijuana for minors, a suggestion made by parents who worry of their child choking from the current dry-leaf and lozenge options, the bill would include eliminating a limit on the number of marijuana strains that the state’s dispensaries can cultivate.
Governor Christie’s decision came after an epileptic girl’s father, who contends the bill would make it easier for her to get a version of the drug that might help her, stayed on Christie about it, even crashing one of the Governor’s events. The father also stated on CNN that the psychiatrist is just a roadblock.
Christie was reluctant initially, but eventually gave in to making a decision today, which led to his request for modification.
After hearing the news, he was called out by Democratic New Jersey state Senator Joseph Vitale, who said the Governor has made these children wait long enough. See below: