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Medical Marijuana Takes A Slow Road In Illinois

Jacob Redmond

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Almost 200 adults and 10 children were approved for medical marijuana in Illinois this past July, but with limited dispensaries the struggle is still prevalent.

The strict regulations around medical marijuana have allowed only 2,800 patients to be officially approved for use of the drug.

Parents have recently been pushing for the expansion of medical marijuana for children who also suffer from one of the 40 medical conditions authorized for adults.

Although thousands of people are currently approved for the drug, there are only a handful of dispensaries in the state.

With a growing number of facilities springing up throughout the southern parts of the state, the road to accessible medical marijuana is slowly being paved.

Revolution Enterprises is currently constructing two instate growing facilities: one in Barry and another in Delavan. The Delavan plant has already begun growing dozens of different strains of cannabis, even though the facility is still under construction.

Revolution Enterprises CEO Tim McGraw said these first plants will be ready for harvest as early as October. The thousands of pounds of cannabis produced from these facilities annually will be distributed throughout the state in armored vehicles. The majority of the harvest will be sent to the Chicago area where dispensaries are currently located.

Springfield and Collinsville have both been recently approved for dispensaries while Bloomington-Normal is in the process of changing zoning codes to make way for dispensaries.

Dispensaries will help provide patients with a safe and legal way to obtain their prescription. Providing safe marijuana to patients is the top priority of Revolution Enterprises' growing facilities and making it accessible to patients is the next step.

Currently, those who have qualified for medical marijuana must resort to purchasing cannabis illegally or going to other states where dispensaries are more plentiful. More dispensaries would decrease the amount of illegal drug dealing prescribed patients engage in.

Sterling Gipson, a Normal native who currently resides in Santa Barbara, Calif., is prescribed marijuana for insomnia and anxiety.

Gipson said purchasing straight from a dispensary also helped relieve some of her anxiety.

"You know you're getting fair prices and decent quality. It's also a large positive to not have to deal with illegal drug dealers; it's much less stress," Gipson said. "I think that one day we will get there. California was once just as strict as Illinois is. It will take time, but we will be there one day."

Illinois is not quite on pace with some other states, but with time, might be able to offer the obtainability California and others have been able to provide qualifying patients.

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News Moderator: Jacob Redmond 420 MAGAZINE ®
Full Article: Medical marijuana takes a slow road in Illinois ? Vidette Online
Author: Susanna Doehler
Contact: vidette_sddoehl@ilstu.edu
Photo Credit: La Cruces Sun News
Website: Vidette Online
 
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