South Carolina advocates comment on medical cannabis legislation

South Carolina advocates comment on medical cannabis legislation

The following press release was issued by the South Carolina Compassionate Care Alliance:

S. 150 now heads to the House of Representatives for consideration

Columbia, SC — On Thursday, the South Carolina Senate passed a medical cannabis bill in a voice vote on third reading. The bill passed 28-15 on second reading.

The South Carolina Compassionate Care Act (S. 150), introduced by Sen. Tom Davis (R), would create a well-regulated medical cannabis program to allow patients with debilitating medical conditions and a doctor’s certification to access medical cannabis from regulated facilities. 

Debate on the South Carolina Compassionate Care Act in the Senate began on January 26, marking the first time that the chamber has considered medical cannabis legalization. The bill now heads to the House of Representatives for consideration. 

South Carolinians overwhelmingly support allowing cannabis for medical use. A February 2021 poll conducted by Starboard Communications found that 72% of South Carolina residents support legalizing cannabis for medical use, with only 15% opposed. Additionally, the Epilepsy Foundation, National Multiple Sclerosis Society, and the South Carolina Podiatric Medical Association have supported South Carolina’s medical cannabis bills for some time. 

Thirty-seven states — including Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Louisiana, and most recently, Mississippi  — have laws providing the framework for patients with debilitating medical conditions to have access to regulated cannabis products under a doctor’s care.

“After seven long years of fighting, this Senate vote is truly an historic moment. It brings hope for so many who desperately need safe, legal access to medical cannabis. I can never thank Senator Davis enough for his tireless efforts. But I am also grateful for all members of the Senate whose careful discernment brought them to a place of support for the Compassionate Care Act. SC House, here we come!” – Jill Swing of Charleston, executive director of the S.C. Compassionate Care Alliance and mother of a daughter with a severe seizure disorder

“The veteran community is proud of the South Carolina Senate’s approval of our medical cannabis bill. Now let’s expedite this bill through the House of Representatives. My fellow veterans are long overdue for our freedom and choice of medical treatment.” – Cody Callerman, Marine Corps veteran and South Carolina hemp farmer who legally used cannabis for pain and PTSD when living in California

“I’m grateful to God that the Senate passed the Compassionate Care Act that will relieve pain and suffering for countless South Carolinians of ALL ages. We will now have a safe, legal alternative to opioids. Tom Davis has been a tireless crusader, often in a lonely battle on behalf of those who had no voice. He NEVER gave up! I extend my heartfelt thanks to our lawmakers, many of whom stepped out of their comfort zones, researched facts, and contributed to make this bill one of the best in the country.” – Margaret Richardson of Hilton Head who suffers from trigeminal neuralgia

The South Carolina Compassionate Care Alliance is a statewide coalition of patients, families, and advocates working to establish a comprehensive medical cannabis program in South Carolina. For more information, visit https://www.SCCompassion.com.