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Lawmaker works to legalize medical marijuana in Florida

Medical marijuana is a controversial subject here in Florida. While legislative leaders as well as the governor have staunchly opposed decriminalizing the herbal drug for medical use, a number of ill Floridians leave the state to receive the treatment where it is legal. Some of those who do not have the means to leave the state find ways to obtain medical marijuana in Florida, risking criminal prosecution.

The Chairman of the Florida House Criminal Justice Subcommittee agreed this week to file a bill that would legalize a certain type of medical marijuana in the state. He did so after hearing from a number of Florida parents whose children who suffer from epileptic seizures.

The parents argue that their children's conditions, characterized by uncontrollable seizures, are much improved by certain types of medical marijuana, including "Charlotte's Web." 

"Charlotte's Web" contains a significant amount of cannabidiol, which is thought to control seizures. It has a low amount of tetrahydrocannabinol, THC, which is what creates the high feeling.

The committee heard from one parent whose child's condition has improved greatly since being treated with oil derived from "Charlotte's Web" marijuana. According to the Tampa Bay Times, the girl used to suffer hundreds of seizures on a weekly basis; this is now down to about one.

The legalization of "Charlotte's Web" or any type of medical marijuana still has a very long way to go in Florida. And, in the meantime, many parents may end up doing whatever they possibly can to help their children. 

Those who find themselves facing drug charges related to medical marijuana should seek criminal defense counsel as soon as possible. Whether the accusations are for the recreational or medical use of marijuana, the consequences for convictions are very harsh under Florida law. 

Source: Tampa Bay Times, "Florida lawmaker agrees to work to legalize medical marijuana in high in cannabidiol," Jan. 9, 2014

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