For the past two years, Congress has passed annual spending bills which included a provision protecting those who engage in the state-sanctioned use and dispensing of medical cannabis from undue prosecution by the Department of Justice. However, members of Congress have yet to taken action to reauthorize this provision and therefore the law is set to expire at the end of the month.
The amendment, known as the Rohrabacher-Farr Amendment, maintains that federal funds can not be used to prevent states from “implementing their own state laws that authorize the use, distribution, possession or cultivation of medical marijuana.”
Just last month, a three-judge panel of the US Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit upheld the amendment, opining that federal officials are not permitted to engage in the criminal prosecution of those who are involved in activity related to medical marijuana absent evidence that the defendants are in clear violation of state law. However, this protection ceases to exist if the provision is not renewed — putting hundreds of thousands of patients and providers at risk.+
Please use NORML's contact tool to contact your federally elected officials and urge them to move quickly to reauthorize the Rohrabacher-Farr Amendment and to keep these important patient protections in place.