Cannabis Seed: Proposed medical-marijuana database In Columbia worries some patient advocates

Within the District of Columbia it is legal to smoke cannabis with specific permissions for medical purposes. There are 15 states in America that have legislation for the medical use of the drug, which is known to help in a number of diseases and ailments. The Colorado Department of Revenue's Medical Marijuana Advisory Board this week publishes an extensive set of draft rules and procedures for Colorado’s medical-marijuana industry. One of which is a cause of concern for the recipients of the medical cannabis. The proposal is a plan to create a massive new database of MMJ patients who enrol in the Medical Marijuana Registry, which will be available to law enforcement agencies round the clock. Cannabis seed producers in the district are also feeling the pinch of the restrictive laws governing cannabis in the USA. As they are unable to sell to other states that allow medicinal use, due to needing to cross state lines to do so.

Currently, the registry is maintained by the Colorado Department of Health and Environment and can be accessed by police officers only when they need to confirm the enrolment status of a person in custody. The Cannabis Therapy Institute, one of the state’s more outspoken patient-rights groups, calls the new plans a violation of the Constitutional amendment that legalized medical marijuana in 2000.

The new regulations which are still in the proposal stage (which include a system for tracking marijuana from seed to sale in an effort to avoid it leaking into the black market) rely heavily on information technology. Grow operations will be outfitted with cameras that will be monitored by state regulators, and cameras also will track sales to individuals at the cash register. Patient advocates long have worried that information on the registry would be used by police to target patients; although legal in Colorado for medical use, marijuana is illegal under federal law no matter what the use. The rules will be adopted after a rule-making hearing, which could take place as early as next month. It would appear that while a few forward thinking areas in America have embraced the benefits of the cannabis seed, the federal government is trailing behind.

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