Kentucky medical marijuana meetings underway

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Published: Jun. 21, 2022 at 6:55 PM CDT
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KENTUCKY (WFIE) - The Team Kentucky Medical Cannabis Advisory Committee held its first meeting in Frankfort on Monday.

Two people from the Tri-State are on that committee.

Julie Cantwell is one of the members of the Team Kentucky Medical Cannabis Advisory Committee, and says she herself is an advocate, for reasons that hit close to home.

“My son, Preston, he has generalized epilepsy. He has drug-resistant epilepsy,” says Cantwell, “so about 3 years ago we decided to let him use medical cannabis from out-of-state, and he hasn’t had a seizure in 32 months.”

“70 and 80-year-olds are crossing state lines to get help, and it makes me really sad that people have to break the law for something that really really does work,” says Cantwell.

Cantwell is joined by 16 other specially-selected members who are going to be taking the time to listen to Kentuckians across the state, both for and against the legalization of medical marijuana, to give guidance to administration on how to go about it.

They’ll be hearing from residents like Grace Henderson, who says she’s dealt with over 20 chronic conditions in the past.

“I was diagnosed with Chron’s Disease in 2005, during my Junior Year of college, and at that point, I had already been managing chronic pain for many years,” says Henderson.

Henderson says she was so debilitated by her ailments that she was actually put on disability in 2011. She says she could barely function, let alone hold down a job.

She tired of going through prescription medicines, hoping to find relief.

She switched to cannabis-related products, and she says it helped her tremendously.

In 2019, she was even able to hold down a job with a non-profit.

“I was able to get a job and use my college education, you know what I mean?” says Henderson, “like, all these student loans, I’m able to actually put all of this to good use, all just purely from using cannabinoids and cannabis products.”

The issue?

The products that Henderson and Cantwell’s son each used came from out of state, and are currently illegal in Kentucky. That’s what the board is looking at potentially changing.

“They’re just ready for the state to do the right thing and legalize this,” says Cantwell.

“I won’t be considered a criminal anymore, and people like me won’t be considered a criminal anymore, because I’m not a criminal,” says Henderson.

The committee is going to be holding forums on July 6 in Pikeville and then on July 19, once again in Frankfort.

The comment page for the Kentucky team can be found here.

The Kentucky Moms for Medical Cannabis page can be found here.

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