For the first time since World War II, a form of cannabis will be legally be sold in Missouri for medicinal purposes.
Governor Jay Nixon signed into law House Bill 2238, also known as the Missouri Medicinal Marijuana Bill, last July. It is a very narrow law that allows those with severe epileptic seizures to use hemp oil, extracted from the cannabis plant, as a form of treatment.
Two non-profit organizations have been chosen and licensed to produce the hemp oil: Beleaf and the Noah’s Arc foundation.
Freshman Jordan Reece said she believes this is a good first step for Missouri.
“I think it’s a good idea, but I also think they maybe should have done more clinical trials because what worked for one person may not work for another. But if it works it’s a great idea,” Reece said.
John Payne is executive director of Show-Me Cannabis. Show-Me Cannabis is an association of organizations who believe cannabis prohibition is a failed policy, according to the Show-Me Cannabis website.
Payne said this could be the first step in allowing other forms of cannabis to be legally sold in Missouri.
“Maybe this will start to change people’s negative perspectives about cannabis, and help them see that maybe it isn’t a bad thing and that it does have positive medical applications and industrial applications,” Payne said.
Reece said she hopes to see the Medical Marijuana law expand for her mother’s sake.
“I think they should expand the law to allow full plant usage for medical marijuana,” Reece said. “Like for my mom who has Crohn's Disease, medicinal marijuana could help the pain but for the hemp oil may not be as effective.”
Payne said Show-Me Cannabis is hoping to see the law expand through their upcoming 2016 initiative.
“There are a lot of different proposals in the state legislatures and one is to expand the law to disorders outside of epilepsy, and expand from two cultivations centers to ten. There are also proposals to legalize pretty much full plant medical cannabis.” Payne said “We are also interested in starting our own initiative for 2016. We will have to see what we can do for that, whether it’s full legalization or just heavy medical cannabis legalization.”