California Medical Marijuana Bills Await Governor’s Signature
Two medical marijuana bills that were passed by the California legislature in September have been sent to Democratic Governor Gavin Newsom for his approval, but cannabis activists are concerned that he won’t sign the measures before an impending deadline. Senate Bill 305, also known as Ryan’s Law, would allow terminally ill patients to use medical cannabis in California hospitals while Senate Bill 34, the Dennis Peron and Brownie Mary Act, would permit licensed dispensaries to make donations of medical marijuana to patients.
Senate Bill 305 was written by Southern California resident Jim Bartell after his experience caring for his son Ryan, who died in 2018 after being diagnosed with stage 4 pancreatic cancer. To ease his pain during treatment at a hospital in Washington, Ryan was given high doses of opioids, causing him to sleep most of the time. After four weeks, he had had enough and asked for cannabis instead.
“Dad, you need to get me off of this fentanyl, because I don’t want to spend my last few weeks sleeping,” Ryan Bartell told his father at the time.
“I promised him I would,” remembers Jim Bartell.
Many Hospitals Forbid Medical Marijuana
Ryan was not permitted to use cannabis