Amid the nationwide campaign to mitigate usage restrictions of marijuana, it appears New York has joined the growing number of states that have effectively made revisions.
According to the NY Times, state officials have announced that Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo of New York has set plans in motion to declare the allowance of marijuana usage for those with serious illnesses. However, the executive action comes with vast limitations and restrictions that will still cause complications with usage justification.
Cuomo’s order actually comes as a surprise to most, given his adamant resistance toward legalizing medical marijuana. But, the Democrat’s executive order is far less liberal than that of states like California and Colorado, where the drug can be purchased for recreational use. Gov. Cuomo’s restrictions will only permit 20 hospitals throughout the state of New York to prescribe marijuana for medical purposes.
The publication also reported that an unnamed source with a synopsis of Cuomo’s views weighed in on his perspective. The source stated that Cuomo’s decision, “was rooted in his belief that the program he has drawn up can help those in need, while limiting the potential for abuse”.
Under New York’s marijuana laws, the drug may be permissible for patients with medical conditions such as cancer and glaucoma. However other conditions may meet the requirements mandated by the New York State Department of Health.
While the order is definitely a far cry from full legalization for recreational purposes, it does speak volumes. New York has been notorious for its formidable penalties toward those facing charges associated with sales and distribution of drugs. So, this executive order is a groundbreaking step toward the policies that are supported by officials and advocates in other states.
Since the order is still in the preliminary stages, it has not been determined when the state will begin administering legalized medical marijuana. However the state of New York does aspire to have a definitive foundation in place some time this year.