A two-year-old Scotch Plains girl and other sick children who qualify for medical marijuana moved closer to getting the treatments they need after the New Jersey Assembly overwhelmingly approved changes in the regulations on Monday.
Vivian Wilson, a toddler who suffers from a severe, rare form of epilepsy, was issued a card to obtain the drug in February, but faced a number of roadblocks, including a ban on edible cannabis.
Inspired by her story, lawmakers overwhelmingly passed a bill in June to reverse the ban and make other changes but were asked to revisit the issue after Gov. Christie attached recommendations to a veto last month.
A few weeks later, the Senate approved the recommendations, and the Assembly followed suit Monday with a 70-1 vote, with four abstentions.
“We are happy that this is finally being signed into law,” said Vivian’s parents, Brian and Meghan in a statement. “Our next focus will be working with the Mary E. O’Dowd and Department of Health to ensure that this law i. . . . . READ MORE
Christie signaled that he would sign the bill if the Legislature changed it to stipulate that edible forms of marijuana would be available only to qualified minors, and that a pediatrician and psychiatrist had to approve a child’s prescription.
“Today, I am making common sense recommendations to this legislation to ensure sick children receive the treatment their parents prefer, while maintaining appropriate safeguards,” Christie said in a statement.
Christie agreed to allow sick children access to forms of pot that can be eaten. The move is supported by parents worried that the dry-leaf and lozenge forms of the drug pose health concerns.
He also supported removing a limit on the number of marijuana strains that state dispensaries can provide. That would give patients, adults and children, a variety of marijuana strains to choose from; advocates say different strains carry different medicinal properties.
Chri. . . . . READ MORE