Medical Marijuana in Vermont

United States
September 7, 2007 8:26pm CST
A few years ago, the Vermont legislature passed a bill to allow the use of medical marijuana for people with conditions such as M.S., AIDS, HIV, cancer, and other terminal illnesses. The law went short of allowing the use of marijuana for people like me - in chronic pain with chronic conditions that could be eased with marijuana. This year, the medical marijuana issue was back on the table in Vermont government, and an amendment to the law was passed when Governor Jim Douglas decided not to veto, nor sign the law (which means the law automatically went into effect, after a certain period of time of the passed law being on his desk, waiting for his decision). On July 1st, Vermont residents with chronic conditions were eligible to apply for their "marijuana license" from the state of Vermont. Unfortunately for me, I was unable to apply because I had changed my residence from Southern Vermont to just over the border, in upstate New York. I was bummed out when I found out that I had become eligible only days after I had moved from Vermont to New York, but honestly, I had no choice in the matter! Recently, I researched this issue to make sure that the law had indeed passed, and that I would be eligible once moving back to Vermont. My suspicions were confirmed and I was excited - after all, I have been waiting for this day to come for years! The only problem is that I have been on diversion since February, due to being arrested and charged with marijuana possession back in November of 2006. When I went to court I was offered two choices - and back at that time I had more hope for my future than I do now, to be honest. I figured that diversion would be the best route to go: diversion keeps you out of court, off of probation, and two years after completing the program, the charge is removed from your record! I thought, at the time, like this would save my record from being tarnished, therefore making me ineligible for many jobs that I have worked at before, or could potentially work in the future...where this charge would be looked down upon because of the line(s) of work I'd be applying to work in. I could've paid a $200 fine at the time, but living off a disability check every month left me with no other choice, so I thought. I ended up paying money to enroll in diversion anyway, and I believe it was $50 on sliding scale due to my income. I should be done with diversion by now, but I've hit a couple of snags during the process, mainly due to my illness! Can you imagine - the only reason I smoke(d) in the first place was due to my illness and the chronic pain I'm in, and I got caught and the policewoman wouldn't give me a break. Now that I'm eligible for this license, I think the charge should just be dropped, but the state of Vermont isn't going to do that! But due to my illness, diversion hasn't ended for me, and I'm going to have a hard time fulfilling the requirements due to the fact that I'm dis/Abled, without a car, and without money to get me to the counseling I am supposed to go to on a frequent basis. I want to just give up, but I know I can't! I'll be moving back to Vermont in the next couple of months, but in the meantime, I have so many other things to take care of. I am going to apply for medical marijuana as soon as I become a Vermont State Resident can count on that. The good news is that the Vermont Medical Marijuana Policy Project not only offers help and information regarding this topic, but they also offer financial assistance for those who can't afford to pay the $50.00 to register and apply for the medical marijuana "license". You can find the page regarding Vermont's Medical Marijuana policies, laws, etc, at the following link: If you want to help me in any way, or want to connect because you know what it is like to be in this position, please contact me via mylot! I am always looking to talk about this issue with folks who understand chronic pain, chronic illness, and how medical marijuana can help ease the uncomfortable symptoms associated with chronic issues! Take care of yourselves, mylot friends! PEACE!
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