Senate Bill 357, a newly proposed bill that bans family courts from discriminating parents participating in Missouri’s medical marijuana program, has become a topic of recent debate for state legislators.
How Medical Marijuana Affects Missouri Parents’ Rights
Medical use of cannabis is legal in 35 states across the country, but it is Arizona and Delaware that have provisions to prevent medical marijuana patients from losing custody and visitation rights due to participation in the program. , Hawaii, Illinois, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, New Hampshire, New York, Washington. In states like Missouri, where there are no protection provisions, the rights of parents of qualified patients are floating in the air.
according to Zaina Afrassiab, Faculty of Law, University of Missouri“Lack of case law on the use of medical marijuana (due to the most recent legalization of Missouri) .. .. Qualified Missouri parents, that is, parents with a state-issued medical marijuana license. I left it temporarily. “
In non-Missouri cases, qualified parents should be able to continue to use medical cannabis within the program guidelines without endangering their children, but the law suggests. Lack of clarity can be daunting. “In the past, courts have submitted random drug tests, participated in drug rehabilitation programs, and / or accepted restricted visits to parents smoking marijuana to prove their health. I ordered. ”
For many parents, the lack of statutory family law protection is a terrifying hypothesis. What if I lose custody of my child because of using medical marijuana?
Senate Bill 357, Medical Marijuana Patients, and Family Court
Jamie Katz, Executive Director of NORML Kansas, said: “I have to bear the stigma through litigation proceedings and exercise the First Amendment’s right to amend Missouri’s cannabis law to give other Missouri citizens access to the medicines they need. I had to attend a drug test just to do it. “
Kacz was one of five people selected to read testimony in support of Senate Bill 357 earlier this month. The proposed bill amends state law: “Family court participants who are eligible for valid medical marijuana certification do not violate family court conditions based on their participation in Missouri health care. Suppose. Marijuana Program. “
Senator Barbara Ann Washington (D-Kansas City), who sponsors the bill, led the presentation in front of seniors, families, veterans and military committees in Missouri.
“Parents can’t be punished with other medicines,” Washington said. “We don’t punish them for smoking. Of course, unless they’re excessive, we don’t punish them if they drink. Therefore, they legally use medical marijuana. If so, I want those parents to be open-minded and not prevented from reuniting with their children. “
Joplin’s medical marijuana patient, Paul Calicourt, complained about the problem. “I think it’s unbelievable that someone could hold it against me in court. It’s a constitutional right to use medical marijuana,” he said.
However, Chairman Bill White, Senator R-Joplin, did not accept the idea and argued that it was the family court’s job to identify the issue of addiction and substance abuse in custody cases. He insisted that: “If you have alcohol problems, the court can say,’Don’t drink.’I now know that it’s a little different from medical marijuana cards, but medical marijuana cards [prescription] Written under our federal system of how we write for drugs and other such things. “
“Cannabis is a medicine … Cannabis is effective in treating and / or managing many health conditions,” said Cynthia Northcut, a family law lawyer, registered nurse, and witness in favor of Senate Bill 357. There is important, high-quality, reviewed evidence. “
Currently, the bill is not scheduled to be heard, but the supporters behind it are enthusiastic. Jamie Kacz emphasized: “Patients with legal medical marijuana should not live for fear of losing their children. No patient deserves to tear up their family because of their status as legal marijuana patients.”
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