I have always been fortunate enough to live in Oregon, which is one of the most progressive states in the nation when it comes to marijuana policy. Oregon has had a medical marijuana program since 1998, the second oldest program behind California. My entire adult life has been spent in a medical marijuana state, which is very reassuring. I used to have a medical marijuana card, but was forced out of the program due to the rising costs of enrollment. However, I know that if I ever needed to get back into the program, and could afford to do so, enrollment would not be hard, and it certainly wouldn't be impossible like other states that do not have medical marijuana programs. Not everyone is as lucky as I am. Below is a heartfelt letter from a very hardworking activist that I hope everyone reads. Please consider donating to his relocation fund! His letter is below:
High Dear Friends:
My father and I both suffer from physical, mental, and emotional illnesses such as spinal damage, GI Tract disorders, PTSD (non-combat related), anxiety, depression, and suicidal ideation to name a few. Currently we live in my grandmother's house via a life estate she established before passing away so that we would have a roof over our heads.
However, with our only source of income being his SSI payments of 716 dollars a month and my inability to work we cannot afford to pay the yearly real-estate taxes let alone acquire bank loans to pay for the much needed repairs that this house desperately needs. I've applied for SSDI/SSI but even if I am accepted and receive back pay the repairs such as a new roof, repairing and renovating the bathroom, re-landscaping the yard and waterproofing the basement to avoid further deterioration of the foundation, to name a few, are well beyond our fiscal means.
To add to this, we both require medical cannabis yet we live in Missouri, one of the worst states for cannabis consumers to live, and must rely on the illicit market for poor quality cannabis, which barely aids in alleviating and or treating our medical conditions and comes with the potential of legal ramifications.
This brings me to the point of the GoFundMe page.
We've decided that it is best that we move to a Western state with a medical marijuana program. We know that this move will not turn our lives around overnight but moving to a state that is cannabis friendly will offer us access to grades and varieties of cannabis to treat our medical conditions. More importantly, relocating gives us a chance at a fresh start that will allow us to begin rebuilding our lives, while at the same time I can explore the employment potentials that the burgeoning cannabis markets provide potentially avoiding the limitations SSDI and SSI place upon individuals.
At this point, we do not have a plan other than moving but we need funds to make this happen. However, we barely make it month to month even with an additional 230 dollars a month in food stamps and that is why I started this GoFundMe page. As I've stated we do not have a concrete plan that is why I set the goal for 5,000 dollars but it will help us cover the costs of moving and provide us a buffer while I wait for SSDI/SSI to come through or find a job in the marijuana industry. I know it's a lot of money but we have a year before the house goes up for sale by the county to recoup the backed taxes owed on the house so there is plenty of time to collect the funds necessary to make this move a reality.
Having said all that, I want to thank you for taking the time to read about our story, thank you for your donations (for those of you who are able to donate), and to thank you for sharing our story with friends and family (for those of you who choose to share).
J.D. TriXteR Phillips