A three-judge panel in a court in San Francisco has decided that the rights of disabled patients in the United States are not protected by the Americans with Disabilities Act, even when they are prescribed medical marijuana by a doctor.
The verdict of the court seemed to start off well for advocates of medical marijuana. The court mentioned that that people with disabilities can be in a lot of pain and they have the right to live a comfortable life and basic human dignity. On top of that, the court recognized that the state of California has adopted marijuana as an effective drug against serious pain.
The court could, however, not agree with the demand that medical marijuana use should be protected by the ADA. The main reason for this is the fact that the US federal government does not approve of using marijuana for medical purposes. Although the views upon the usage of medical marijuana are slowly changing, it is still regarded as an illegal drug.
Disabled patients in California have legally been able to use medical marijuana for years. The state has allowed the possession, sale and cultivation of marijuana in 1996 and the use of medical marijuana in the area is now widely accepted. Many patients that suffer from debilitating pain can easily obtain marijuana by buying it or by growing it from marijuana seeds.
Since 1996 many states have followed the example set by California and legalized the use of medical marijuana. At this point in time, 18 states in the US have legalized the use of medical marijuana and more are expected to follow before the end of this year.