New Jersey just made medical marijuana legal!Â Â On JanuaryÂ 11, 2010,Â New Jersey lawmakers passed the medical marijuana bill.Â New Jersey is the first state in the region to make medical marijuana legal and the 14th state in the nation.
New Jersey passed the measure the last day of the legislative session.Â Patients with severe illnesses such as AIDS, multiple sclerosis, cancer and muscular dystrophy can access medical marijuana given out through dispensaries monitored by New Jersey.
Gov. Jon S. Corzine indicates heÂ will sign the law before he leaves office next Tuesday.Â Governor-elect Christopher J. Christie supported the bill as long as safeguards exist to ensure recreational use of marijuana was not encouraged.
Doctors in New Jersey can onlyÂ prescribe marijuana for serious chronic illnesses.Â Patients cannot grow their own marijuana or use it in public.Â Marijuana will be strictly regulated much like morphine and Oxycontin.
The New York Times reports the bill was sponsored by Assemblyman Reed Gusciora, a Princeton Democrat who stated, "I truly believe this will become a model for other states because it balances the compassionate use of medical marijuana while limiting the number of ailments that a physician can prescribe it for."
To read more about the legalization of medical marijuana in New Jersey, check out the New York Times.Â
What do you think of New Jersey making medical marijuana legal?Â AsÂ a New Yorker, I feel it is progress in alternative medicine.
Here is a YouTube video of the New Jersey medical marijuana debate two months ago: