Will Residents of South Carolina Have Access to Medical Marijuana in 2016?

Marijuana legalization is sweeping the country. The nation’s largest growing industry is rapidly spreading from state to state. While marijuana policy reform has primarily been concentrated along the west coast, it’s leaving some in the state wondering whether or not South Carolina will soon follow suit.

However, it appears that senators have made their decision, at least for the time being.

In April, South Carolina State senators voted against a medical marijuana bill allowing patients suffering from severe or debilitating conditions such as cancer, glaucoma, HIV, and other serious conditions to have safe access in the state.

Proponents of the bill such as Senator Tom Davis argue that cannabis provides real relief to people who are suffering. In fact, Davis has been a primary sponsor of the bill, expressing these thoughts to the Senate Medical Affairs Committee directly. On the other hand, opponents of the bill including Senators Kevin Johnson and Mike Fair argue that the bill would do more harm than good. Primarily, these senators fear that medical marijuana legalization will lead to an increase in recreational usage. Not to mention the potential backlash for law enforcement. But many in the state feel that denial of safe access to cannabis for medicinal purposes is an unfair ruling, particularly for patients who may be seeking an alternative treatment for life-threatening conditions.

Regardless, while this bill is certainly not the final call when it comes to cannabis in South Carolina, it is a clear indication of the state’s current stance on the measure. Residents of South Carolina may not have access to legal medical marijuana for quite some time.

A complex issue, it’s clearly leaving many in the state divided.

Federally illegal and labeled as a Schedule I substance under the Controlled Substance Act. Some in the state believe that residents of South Carolina should not have access to a federally illegal substance. However, it should be noted that the DEA has announced they will decide in the coming months whether or not to reschedule marijuana. But, it appears that at least for the time being, the Palmetto state has made their decision. Legal medical marijuana will not be coming to South Carolina, at least for the present time being.

What do you think? Do you believe residents with a medical condition in South Carolina should have access to marijuana?