As of today, 23 states across the United States have legalized medical marijuana for patients who need it. The uses for medical marijuana can range from treating seizure disorders to alleviating nausea caused by cancer treatment, and a majority of doctors across the nation wish they could use it as a tool.
However, they can't! Most states still do not allow doctors to use marijuana as a tool to help patients, and South Dakota is one of many that does not give doctors the tools they need to successfully heal their patients. But that does not mean there is not hope for the state of South Dakota, as there is legislation being introduced to the state senate this year for the legalization of medical marijuana.
The legislation being introduced is called the "James Parker Mentele Medical Cannabis Act," which aims to allow up to 2 ounces of marijuana for patients and establishes a care giver system similar to many other systems around the nation. Yet, this is not the good news. The South Dakota legislature is not incredibly supportive of medical marijuana, and the chances of this bill passing and getting signed by the governor are incredibly low.
The good news is that there are plans for ballot initiative in the state of South Dakota for the 2016 election, which makes the legislation proposed in the state legislature a perfect spring board for this campaign.
If this ballot initiative can get enough signatures in time for the election, which advocacy groups like Students for Sensible Drug Policy will be working very hard to attain, then medical marijuana can truly be a reality in South Dakota. This means doctors will finally be able to have some of the correct tools in their utility belt, per se.
If you are interested in supporting the advocacy groups in South Dakota with this endeavor make sure to check out some of these social media links: