W.Va.: Gov. Justice evolves on cannabis, but Senate votes to continue punitive policies

Mar 08, 2021

cannabis legalization, cannabis regulation, children, discrimination, drug testing, Gov. Jim Justice, legalization, needy children, parental cannabis use, SB 387, Sen. Ron Stollings, TANF, TANF applicants, TANF benefits, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, West Virginia, WV

W.Va.: Gov. Justice evolves on cannabis, but Senate votes to continue punitive policies

SB 387 would continue to deny benefits to TANF applicants if they test positive for cannabis — urge legislators to stop discriminating against needy children on the basis of their parents’ cannabis use!

Last Tuesday, West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice indicated that his opposition to cannabis legalization is “weakening” because medical experts say cannabis regulation is helping to mitigate drug-related problems in other jurisdictions. He expressed some reservations but said he would be willing to sign a legalization bill if the House and Senate approved it. This is a remarkable development!

Unfortunately, legislators seem to be more interested in maintaining regressive policies than considering legalization. On Wednesday, the Senate passed SB 387, a bill that would extend the state’s policy of drug testing applicants for the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program and disqualifying them if they test positive for cannabis or other drugs. Sen. Ron Stollings proposed an amendment to remove cannabis from the bill, but the amendment was defeated.

Please contact your elected officials and tell them that they should be considering legalization, not voting to punish children because of a parent’s cannabis use.

After you contact your elected officials, share this email with your family and friends.