With Federal agencies trying to rein in on medical cannabis dispensaries throughout the country, patients who would otherwise be clueless as to how to obtain their medicine are left in the crosshairs, and dispensary owners are refusing to let their patients suffer needlessly. Even if that means the dispensary owners will.
“If they put me in jail, they put me in jail, I don’t want to go but I will go,” said Weylin Colebank, owner of Essence of Mother Earth in Spokane, Washington and serves around 400 patients a month.
Colebank is referring to the crackdown United States Attorney for the Eastern District’s Mike Ormsby announced in early April, citing that dispensaries are illegal according to federal law.
“…little old ladies crying and screaming. I’ve got people in wheel chair who are freaking out. These people can’t go out on the street and get drugs” ~ Charles Wright, owner of THC Pharmacy.
Determined to stay open until the feds force him out, Colebank admits he’s fearful. “I really don’t want to go to jail but I think what I’m doing is right and my patients really need it,” said Colebank.
Back in the nineties, voters approved medical marijuana without having to fear criminal prosecution and in 2008 lawmakers voted to allow patients a 60 day supply, not to exceed 24 ounces and 15 plants.
How to obtain that supply is where the feds come into conflict, as Spokane has now been warned that the raids other states have experienced will come to the nearly 40 medical marijuana dispensaries that have opened up in Spokane County that help to relieve the pain in hundreds of patients each day. Hundreds that will have no other place to go.
“We’re of course nervous and upset as are all my patients,” said Charles Wright, owner of another dispensary. “My phone has been ringing off the hook all day, little old ladies crying and screaming. I’ve got people in wheel chair who are freaking out. These people can’t go out on the street and get drugs,” he said.
“Our patients are in tremendous need, we are going to do everything we can to support them… we will keep the doors open as long as it seems reasonable” said Wright.