Florida Medical Cannabis Bill


March 10, 2010 – At the state capitol in Tallahassee, Rep. Jeff Clemens (D-Lake Worth) and co-sponsors introduce the first legislation ( HJR 1407 – pdf ) in the history of Florida to put the issue of medical cannabis to a vote.

Observing that “In Florida, seven people a day die from using prescription drugs. No one on Florida dies from medicinal cannabis”, Rep Clemens also notes the “pill mill” problem in Florida, which sells 85% of the Oxycodone in America – “To me it makes absolutely no sense that we would not allow people to use a safer drug – something that helps with their issues, yet doesn’t cause all the problems that some of those prescription narcotics cause”.

Rep. Clemens invited Catherine Jordan to speak at the press conference, as she has lived for a remarkable twenty-five years since diagnosis of ALS (Lou Gehrig’s Disease), even now with a good quality of life. Clemens quoted her in his press release, “Cannabis is a neuro-protector, anti-oxidant; and an anti-inflammatory…I am here today to help patients and the families of patients with neuromuscular diseases and brain disorders to educate themselves on cannabis”.

Also invited to speak to the press was Mary Lynn Mathre, from Patients Out of Time. A registered nurse and a former U.S. Navy Lieutentant on the Board of Directors of Veterans for Medical Cannabis Access. Mary Lynn observed the new position of the Veterans Administration that allows veterans in states with legal medical marijuana programs to use cannabis without repercussions.

Video of the Press Conference on our YouTube channel:

Statement by Mary Lynn Mathre, RN, MSN, CARN to Rep. Jeff Clemens Press Conference, March 10, 2011

I am a masters-prepared registered nurse, certified in addictions nursing with more than 35 years of nursing experience.  I am here to represent two national organizations – Patients Out of Time and Veterans for Medical Cannabis Access.   I am the President and Co-founder of Patients Out of Time; a 501c3 educational charity created in 1995.  Our mission is to educate health care professionals and the public about the therapeutic use of cannabis.  Please visit our website at www.medicalcannabis.com.  The marijuana prohibition is based on lies and racism. Marijuana is the Mexican name for cannabis and this name change helped pass the Marihuana Tax Act of 1937, which marked the beginning of the marijuana prohibition.  Most of the “so-called” facts about marijuana that we’ve all been taught for the last 70 years are myths or straight out lies.  Cannabis is a medicinal herb that has been used for centuries throughout the world and has a remarkable safety record.  Since 2000 Patients Out of Time has sponsored a biennial series of accredited clinical conferences on cannabis therapeutics to share the emerging science.  The research is plentiful and overwhelmingly supports the safety of cannabis.  The history of medicinal cannabis, scientific studies and clinical trials support its efficacy for a variety of ailments.

The name of our organization signifies the urgency of our mission – Patients Out of Time.  Patients are in desperate need of this medicine now.  We don’t need more research.  We all welcome more research, but the patients need this medicine now.  This plant can provide much relief from pain and suffering and greatly improves the quality of life for countless patients.

I am also here today to represent Veterans for Medical Cannabis Access (www.veteransformedicalcannabis.org).  I am a former LT in the U.S. Navy Nurse Corps and a Board member of Veterans for Medical Cannabis Access.  The VMCA was instrumental in getting the Under Secretary of Health for the Department of Veterans Affairs to issue a Directive on medicinal cannabis this summer. In July of 2010, VHA Directive #2010-035 instructed all health care providers to allow the medical use of cannabis by a Veteran if the Veteran lived in a medical cannabis state and had a legitimate recommendation from an approved civilian health care provider.  Without a medical cannabis law in Florida, this medicine is forbidden to our Veterans.  If you truly support our Veterans, then the legislators of FL need to end the cannabis prohibition in FL.  Our Veterans earned their freedom of choice.

So as a nurse and on behalf of Patients Out of Time and Veterans for Medical Cannabis Access, I am here today to support Representative Jeff Clemens’ medicinal cannabis bill.

Mary Lynn Mathre, RN, MSN, CARN

President and Co-founder, Patients Out of Time

Patients and advocacy organizations were represented, including:
* Cathy Jordan, with ALS (Lou Gehrig’s Disease):
* People United for Medical Marijuana: https://pufmm.org/
* Florida Cannabis Action Network: https://flcan.org/


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