A bill introduced in Pennsylvania aims to protect the state’s medical cannabis patients from driving under the influence charges. The bill includes both a Democratic sponsor, Rep. Chris Rabb, and a Republican sponsor, Rep. Todd Polinchock,
The bill would offer protection from DUI charges for patients enrolled in the state medical cannabis program who are not impaired when they are pulled over—the same as any other prescription medication, the sponsors said in a March 12 memorandum attached to the bill.
In a statement, Rabb said that medical cannabis patients “can take a minuscule amount of medicine for their ailment and weeks later, with traces of cannabis still in their system, be subject to arrest on a DUI charge if pulled over—not because they’ve driven impaired, but because our state laws haven’t caught up with the science.”
“And, if you think you don’t know someone who falls into this category—a person who has been prescribed medical cannabis and who drives and is fearful of the potential DUI charge they could face—you’re wrong. I am a card-carrying medical cannabis patient, and I drive regularly, including in and around Philadelphia and to Harrisburg conducting the people’s business.”—Rabb in a press release
Polinchock noted that the legislation “puts medical cannabis on the same level as other prescription pain relievers.”
“It helps many Pennsylvanians, including many of our seniors,” he said in a statement. “It’s time to remove the stigma and treat this drug as we do others.”
The bill is currently in the House Transportation Committee.
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