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Medical Marijuana Supporters Aim to Gather 30,000 More Signatures in Nebraska

Lincoln, NE– As the clock ticks down to July 3rd, Nebraskans for Medical Marijuana (NMM) is making an urgent appeal. With 65,000 signatures already in hand, they need an additional 30,000 signatures to ensure their petition to legalize and regulate medical cannabis makes it onto the November ballot. This initiative represents a potential turning point for Nebraska, aligning it with the 38 states that have already legalized some form of medical marijuana. Here’s why this campaign is crucial and how you can help make it a reality.

The push to legalize medical marijuana in Nebraska is not just a fleeting campaign—it is backed by a strong and organized effort led by NMM. For the petition to succeed, it must gather signatures from at least 7% of registered voters, equating to around 87,000 signatures, and must also meet the requirement of getting signatures from at least 5% of voters in 38 of Nebraska’s 93 counties.

As of the latest update, NMM has collected an impressive 65,000 signatures. To ensure they comfortably meet the requirement, they need an additional 30,000 signatures. This extra buffer is important, as the Nebraska Secretary of State’s Office may invalidate some signatures during the verification process.

A Look Back at Previous Attempts

This isn’t the first time NMM has fought to bring medical cannabis to the ballot. The Nebraska Supreme Court blocked the initial attempt in 2020, temporarily stalling the campaign. In 2022, despite a valiant effort, the campaign fell short of the necessary signatures. However, these setbacks have only fueled the determination of NMM.

With each attempt, the campaign has grown stronger, gathering more support and signatures than before. This year’s effort has already surpassed previous attempts, showcasing the increasing momentum and public support for medical cannabis legalization in Nebraska.

Legalizing and regulating medical cannabis in Nebraska could have profound benefits for countless individuals. From patients suffering from chronic pain to those seeking alternative treatments for various medical conditions, the potential advantages are numerous. Legalizing medical cannabis would provide a legal avenue for patients to access treatments that can significantly improve their quality of life.

Crista Eggers, NMM campaign manager, has issued a heartfelt plea for support. Eggers, whose personal connection to the cause adds a personal touch to her appeal, stresses the critical nature of the initiative. “My personal ask, not as a campaign manager, but as a mother, is that people would react as if their child’s life depends on it and go sign; because for many of us, our child’s life really does depend on it,” says Eggers via the Nebraska Examiner.

Moreover, this initiative aligns with the national trend toward medical marijuana legalization. Currently, 38 states have legalized medical cannabis in some form, reflecting widespread recognition of its therapeutic benefits. By joining these states, Nebraska would not only enhance healthcare options for its residents but also affirm the right of individuals to choose cannabis as part of their treatment plans.

NMM Brings Forward Two Medical Marijuana Petitions

NMM is collecting signatures from Nebraska voters on two crucial ballot petitions, each containing a statutory measure similar to a bill that might be introduced in the state legislature. The goal is to enact these laws by qualifying both medical cannabis measures for the November 2024 general election ballot. If a majority of Nebraska voters approve each measure, they will become law following the certification of the election results.

The Patient Protection Act

The first petition, known as The Patient Protection Act, is designed to protect patients with serious health conditions, along with their caregivers, from arrest due to the use of medical cannabis recommended by a healthcare provider.

The objective of this measure is to create a statute that exempts qualified patients and their caregivers from state and local penalties for the use, possession, and acquisition of limited quantities of cannabis for medical purposes as long as they have a written recommendation from a healthcare practitioner.

The Medical Cannabis Regulation Act

The second petition, The Medical Cannabis Regulation Act, aims to establish the Nebraska Medical Cannabis Commission, which will regulate the private businesses that provide medical cannabis to qualified patients.

This act aims to create a statute exempting registered private entities from state penalties for the possession, manufacture, distribution, delivery, and dispensing of cannabis for medical purposes. It also seeks to create a governing body to oversee these activities and ensure they meet state standards and regulations.

By signing both petitions, Nebraskans can take a significant step toward the legalization and regulation of medical cannabis, ensuring safe and legal access for those in need.

How You Can Help the NMM and Medical Marijuana in Nebraska

There are several ways you can support the Nebraska Medical Marijuana (NMM) initiative. Volunteering to collect signatures is a crucial role that brings the campaign closer to its goal. By becoming a signature collector, you can engage with fellow Nebraskans, educate them about the initiative, and encourage them to lend their support.

If you’re looking for a paid opportunity, consider becoming a paid petitioner. This role involves canvassing in various communities, ensuring accurate collection of signatures, and advocating for the cause, all while earning a stipend for your efforts.

Additionally, hosting a signing event can create a convenient and supportive atmosphere for others to participate. These events can significantly boost the number of signatures collected and demonstrate the widespread community backing for the initiative.

To find out more about these opportunities and how to get involved, visit the NMM volunteer page here. Your participation can make a significant impact in ensuring medical cannabis is accessible to those who need it.

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