It’s been four years since the Pennsylvania General Assembly and Gov. Tom Wolf legalized medical cannabis. But Pennsylvania still has an unscientific law on the books that criminalizes driving with cannabis in one’s system. Because THC can stay in the body for a week, completely sober drivers — including medical cannabis patients — can be wrongfully branded with a DUI conviction!
On Tuesday, the Pennsylvania House of Representatives passed a bill (SB 773) that would create an exception to this unjust law for state-legal patients. Medical cannabis patients could still be convicted if they drove while impaired, but this would stop criminalizing sober patients with trace amounts of THC in their blood.
The Senate already passed a different version of the bill, which includes other DUI reforms. But the medical cannabis protections were added to the House in a floor amendment, so SB 773 will return to the Senate for another vote.
Check out Rep. Ed Gainey’s powerful speech in support.
In other news, a bipartisan bill was introduced to make several other improvements to Pennsylvania’s medical cannabis law. HB 2945 would remove a cap on the number of patients each caregiver can serve, allow entities (such as nursing homes) to serve as caregivers, allow more medical cannabis telemedicine, and remove a provision that sunsets the law when the federal government reschedules cannabis.
Stay tuned for updates. And don’t forget to take action and spread the word. Together, we can keep improving Pennsylvania’s cannabis laws.