FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Medical Marijuana Rally Coming to Annapolis
Silver Spring, Md. – October 8, 2015 – Maryland NORML is organizing a rally in support of medical cannabis patients in Annapolis, Md. on Monday, October 19 at 5:30 pm. Activists will walk in front of the Arundel Center protesting the proposed ban of medical marijuana by Anne Arundel County Executive Steve Schuh. Immediately following the rally potential patients, and employees and business owners may sign up to testify before the county council which will convene at 7pm.
Arundel Center is located at 44 Calvert Street, Annapolis, Maryland. Rally participants are encouraged to walk on public sidewalks.
Steve Schuh has been a vocal opponent of the medical marijuana program which was approved by the Maryland General Assembly and signed into law by Governor Larry Hogan. Schuh's bill, introduced by County Vice Chair Pete Smith, would ban the medical cannabis industry from Anne Arundel County. The proposed legislation would force patients with cannabis-treatable conditions to purchase their medication from neighboring counties.
Only patients with identification cards would be allowed to participate in the program. The Maryland Medical Cannabis Commission's regulations explicitly state that "it is illegal to transfer medical cannabis to any person". Schuh said he is concerned with the potential for increased recreational use.
Maryland State Senator Bobby Zirkin wrote an op-ed critical of Schuh's proposal in the Baltimore Sun. Senator Zirkin said Schuh uses "bumper sticker slogans" as arguments to continue restricting access to sick patients. Zirkin also said research is yielding a growing consensus which indicates cannabis is a valuable treatment for "a wide variety of ailments and disease".
According to a 2014 Goucher College poll, "Ninety percent of Marylanders support the use of marijuana for medical purposes, if prescribed by a doctor."
Two members of the Maryland congressional delegate have cosponsored the CARERS Act, a comprehensive medical cannabis bill introduced in both Houses of Congress. Senator Barbara Mikulski cosponsored the Senate version in July. And Congressman Chris Van Hollen cosponsored the House companion this month.