Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Carroll backs proposed medical marijuana law

Mount Olive Chronicle
By PHIL GARBER, Managing Editor
Published: Nov 20th, 6:55 AM
Assemblyman Michael Patrick Carroll, R-Morris, remembers when a family member was suffering from debilitating nausea and extreme pain for months after her surgery for ovarian cancer.

Carroll knew that something as simple as marijuana could significantly limit his relative’s discomfort. He also knew it was illegal to use marijuana for any reason, including medical reasons.

The Assemblyman said the experience three years ago reinforced his belief that it is wrong to bar people like his relative from smoking marijuana if it could ease their suffering. It wasn’t long thereafter that Carroll joined in co-sponsoring an Assembly bill to legalize use of marijuana for medical reasons.

Saturday, November 14, 2009


(TRENTON) - Assemblyman Reed Gusciora (D-Princeton) cheered the American Medical Association's (AMA) decision to change its long held policy regarding the classification of marijuana as a drug with no accepted medical use. The AMA recently adopted a resolution that recommends the federal government review the status of marijuana as a Schedule I controlled substance.

"I commend The American Medical Association for having the courage to request that the status of marijuana be re-evaluated in order to enable advanced clinical research, development of cannabis-based medicines and alternate delivery methods," remarked Gusciora.

Rest of article at:

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

BREAKING: AMA Agrees: Marijuana is Medicine


For more info, contact: Ken @ (609) 394-2137

AMA Agrees: Marijuana is Medicine

WHO The American Medical Association (AMA)

WHAT: Recognizes Medical Benefits of Marijuana, Urges Further Research

WHEN: November 10th, 2009

WHERE: Houston, Texas during AMA’s annual Interim Meeting of the House of Delegates

WHY: Marijuana has both already-demonstrated and future-promising medical utility

Largest and oldest U.S. physician-based group reverses long-held position on medical marijuana

Houston, TX -- The American Medical Association (AMA) voted today to reverse its long-held position that marijuana be retained as a Schedule I substance with no medical value. The AMA adopted a report drafted by its Council on Science and Public Health (CSAPH) entitled, "Use of Cannabis for Medicinal Purposes," which affirmed the therapeutic benefits of marijuana and called for further research. The CSAPH report concluded that, "short term controlled trials indicate that smoked cannabis reduces neuropathic pain, improves appetite and caloric intake especially in patients with reduced muscle mass, and may relieve spasticity and pain in patients with multiple sclerosis." Furthermore, the report urges that "the Schedule I status of marijuana be reviewed with the goal of facilitating clinical research and development of cannabinoid-based medicines, and alternate delivery methods."

The change of position by the largest physician-based group in the country was precipitated in part by a resolution adopted in June of 2008 by the Medical Student Section (MSS) of the AMA in support of the reclassification of marijuana's status as a Schedule I substance. In the past year, the AMA has considered three resolutions dealing with medical marijuana, which also helped to influence the report and its recommendations. The AMA vote on the report took place in Houston, Texas during the organization's annual Interim Meeting of the House of Delegates. The last AMA position, adopted 8 years ago, called for maintaining marijuana as a Schedule I substance, with no medical value.

"It's been 72 years since the AMA has officially recognized that marijuana has both already-demonstrated and future-promising medical utility," said Sunil Aggarwal, Ph.D., the medical student who spearheaded the passage of the June 2008 resolution by the MSS and was one of the CSAPH report's designated expert reviewers. "The AMA has written an extensive, well-documented, evidence-based report that they are seeking to publish in a peer-reviewed journal that will help to educate the medical community about the scientific basis of botanical cannabis-based medicines." Aggarwal is also on the Medical & Scientific Advisory Board of Americans for Safe Access (ASA), the largest medical marijuana advocacy organization in the U.S.

The AMA's about face on medical marijuana follows an announcement by the Obama Administration in October discouraging U.S. Attorneys from taking enforcement actions in medical marijuana states. In February 2008, a similar resolution was adopted by the American College of Physicians (ACP), the country's second largest physician group and the largest organization of doctors of internal medicine. The ACP resolution called for an evidence-based review of marijuana's status as a Schedule I controlled substance to determine whether it should be reclassified to a different schedule. "The two largest physician groups in the U.S. have established medical marijuana as a health care issue that must be addressed," said ASA Government Affairs Director Caren Woodson. "Both organizations have underscored the need for change by placing patients above politics."

Though the CSAPH report has not been officially released to the public, AMA documentation indicates that it: "(1) provides a brief historical perspective on the use of cannabis as medicine; (2) examines the current federal and state-based legal envelope relevant to the medical use of cannabis; (3) provides a brief overview of our current understanding of the pharmacology and physiology of the endocannabinoid system; (4) reviews clinical trials on the relative safety and efficacy of smoked cannabis and botanical-based products; and (5) places this information in perspective with respect to the current drug regulatory framework."

Further information:
Executive Summary of AMA Report:
Recommendations of AMA Report:
American College of Physicians resolution:

# # #

CMM-NJ, a 501(c)(3) public charity, is a non-profit organization whose mission is to educate the public about the benefits of safe and legal access to medical marijuana. For more info, contact:

Ken Wolski, RN, MPA,

Executive Director, Coalition for Medical Marijuana--New Jersey, Inc.
219 Woodside Ave., Trenton, NJ 08618

Friday, November 6, 2009

Action Alert: Ask Gov. For A Medical Marijuana Pardon!

alert7New Jersey Multiple Sclerosis patient John Wilson faces up to 20 years in prison for using medical marijuana. New Jersey lawmakers are demanding Democrat Gov. John Corzine to pardon Wilson, who faces trial next month. While pardons are typically requested after a conviction, it is within the governor's power act at any time.

Please contact Gov. Corzine and the state Attorney General's office and demand justice for John Wilson. For your convenience, a pre-written letter will be e-mailed to Gov. Corzine and the AG's office when you enter your contact information.


For more information about this campaign, please contact NORML New Jersey or the Coalition for Medical Marijuana - New Jersey.

CMMNJ Monthly Public Meeting: November Agenda

Monthly Public Meeting Agenda

Lawrence Township Library

Tuesday, November 10, 2009; 7:00 PM – 9:00 PM

7:00 PM: Call meeting to order. Approve minutes.


- New governor in NJ, but will the New Jersey Compassionate Use Medical Marijuana Act pass into law before he takes office? The bill is due for a vote by the Assembly this fall. Tell your legislators that you want the Senate version of the bill to pass into law. This version does not contain the very restrictive changes to the bill that was released by the Assembly Health Committee. See CMMNJ’s recent blog for talking points—but tell your story in your own words. See what a conservative Republican lawmaker in NJ thinks about medical marijuana.

- Support multiple sclerosis (MS) patient John Wilson, who faces 20 years in prison for growing marijuana to treat his MS. Wilson was forbidden by the judge to even mention his medical condition during the upcoming trial, scheduled to start 12/14. Join the rally 12/14/09 at the Somerville Court House. State Senators urge Gov. Corzine to pardon him. Send your own e-mail to the governor. DOJ memo: Federal prosecution of medical marijuana patients to end.

- CMMNJ is scheduled to appear at the following upcoming events:

· Sat., 11/7, noon to 9PM, Skidfest, U. of Delaware, Newark, DE.

· Sun., 11/8, 9:30 PM & Wed., 11/11, 5:30 PM, Larry Kane's "Voice of Reason" on the Comcast Network.

· November 16 – 19, League of Municipalities Conference in Atlantic City

· Sat., 11/21, 12:30 - 2:30 PM, Medical Marijuana Info Seminar, Collingswood Public Library

· Mon., 12/14, 9:00 AM Rally at Somerset Co. Court House, Somerville, NJ to support John Wilson.

- CMMNJ recently appeared at the following events: 10/10, Ewing Community Fest, TCNJ; 10/17 Medical Marijuana Information Seminar, Collingswood Public Library; 10/19, Ocean Co. Community College Medical Marijuana Debate; 10/20, NORML NJ Open Mtng., Wash. Twp, NJ.

- See Ken’s Facebook page & Facebook Friends of CMMNJ!

- Treasury report: Current balances: Checking: $4456.89; PayPal: $561.26. Please consider a tax-deductible donation to CMMNJ, a 501(c)(3) organization, to fund public education about medical marijuana. Donations may be made securely through Paypal or checks made out to “CMMNJ” and sent to the address below. Get a free t-shirt for a donation above $15—specify size. Thank you for your support.

Scheduled meetings are Nov. 10, Dec. 8, 2009 & Jan. 12, 2010. CMMNJ meetings are held on the second Tuesday of the month at the Lawrence Twp. Library from 7:00 PM until 9:00 PM. All are welcome. Snacks are served. The library is at 2751 Brunswick Pike, Lawrence Twp., Tel. #609.882.9246. (Meeting at the library does not imply their endorsement of our issue.) For more info, contact:

Ken Wolski, RN, MPA
Executive Director, Coalition for Medical Marijuana--New Jersey, Inc.
844 Spruce St., Trenton, NJ 08648 (609) 394-2137 ohamkrw(at)

Do you agree that the prosecution of John Wilson is "inappropriate and inhumane" and "a complete waste of taxpayer money”? Send an e-mail to the New Jersey Governor and Attorney General with just a few clicks of your mouse. You can also customize your letter, like I did below. See how easy it is at:

November 5, 2009

Dear Governor Corzine,

As a registered nurse with 33 years of experience in New Jersey, I am
joining members of the New Jersey State Senate who have called for the
pardon of multiple sclerosis patient John Wilson. Wilson faces up to 20
years in prison because he used marijuana to alleviate his pain and
suffering. Senators have publicly denounced the prosecution of Wilson to
be "inappropriate and inhumane" and "a complete waste of taxpayer money."
I can't agree more.

There is no justice in the state's prosecution of John Wilson. I wish to
add my voice to those calling for Wilson's pardon.

New Jersey stands on the threshold of becoming the 14th state to allow for
the legal use of marijuana under a doctor's supervision. The "New Jersey
Compassionate Use Medical Marijuana Act," which the Senate approved in
February 2009, only awaits a floor vote by Assembly before becoming law.
This bill will protect patients like Wilson who use marijuana
therapeutically. Even the federal government's attitude about medical
marijuana is changing. U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder has instructed
federal authorities recently not to arrest or prosecute medical marijuana
patients or caregivers in the 13 states with medical marijuana laws, as
long as they are in compliance with state law.

Wilson's jury trial starts December 14, 2009 and the judge has ruled that
Wilson will not be permitted to tell the jury that he suffers from
multiple sclerosis and that his use of marijuana was for medical purposes
only. Senator Nick Scutari said that Wilson's trial will likely be a relic
of "New Jersey's outdated, socially irresponsible and fiscally
reprehensible approach in treating patients using medical marijuana like
hardened criminals."

It is time to stop this senseless prosecution and pardon John Wilson.


Ken Wolski, RN

cc: Attorney General Milgram

Monday, November 2, 2009

Wilson Trial Support Rallys Planned

Wilson Trial Support Rallys

Despite a public call from two state Senators for a pardon, the criminal trial against John Ray Wilson is moving ahead.

John lives with MS and used cannabis therapy for treatment. He now faces 15 years in state prison for growing 17 marijuana plants.
Read more about John's case here

In August CMNNJ rallied at the Somerset County Courthouse.

Volunteers plan on having a supporting presence at the courthouse through all phases of John's trial.

The next date is December 14, 2009. Read More

John's case has garnered national attention for the aggressiveness of the prosecution. New Jersey's Office of the Attorney General is pursuing the case.

Senators push for pardon of Franklin man with MS charged with growing marijuana
A state appeals court rejected the attempt by his attorney, James Wronko of Somerville, to challenge that ruling while the case is ongoing. It could be the subject of a future appeal, he said.The two legislators are not only seeking the pardon but also pushing a bill titled "New Jersey Compassionate Use Medical Marijuana Act." The bill would decriminalize possession and use of marijuana by state registered patients with debilitating illnesses. It would also establish treatment centers where patients can purchase the drug.

It passed the Senate in a 22-16 vote in February and awaits a vote in the Assembly.

Members of the Coalition for Medical Marijuana New Jersey stood outside the Somerset County Courthouse Friday morning as Wilson was appearing before Reed in a pre-trial conference. The members held signs advocating that marijuana for medicinal purposes be legalized.

Toms River resident Jim Miller, who co-founded the organization, became involved when his late wife Cheryl faced arrest for using marijuana to relieve her pain, said the organization will be stationed outside the courthouse when Wilson goes on trial in December.

Next to Miller on the sidewalk was an empty wheelchair that held his wife's picture.

"This entire block is going to be lined" with demonstrators during the trial, he said. "It would be nice if the governor steps in," he said. READ IN FULL

More about medical marijuana in New Jersey at

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Photo: MS Patient John Ray Wilson Trial

Here is John with CMMNJ co-founder Jim Miller at the courthouse on Friday 10/30 2009. Thanks to K. Long for the pic!

CMMNJ is continuing our support of John Ray Wilson, who faces 15 years in state prison for growing 17 marijuana plants. John lives with MS and used cannabis therapy for treatment.

Donate to the Wilson family directly here.

Despite a public call from two state Senators for a pardon the criminal trial against John is moving ahead.

Read more about John's case here

In August CMMNJ rallied at the Somerset County Courthouse. Our volunteers plan on having a supporting presence at the courthouse through all phases of the trial.

The next date is December 14, 2009. Read More

More Debate Video

More of the video form the 10/19 debate at the Ocean County College.

The full debate is online at

Should Health Insurance Cover Medical Marijuana?

10/30/2009 by Chris Goldstein

On October 19th the Ocean County College in Tom's River, NJ hosted a debate on medical marijuana. A professor of Social Science, Brad Young, moderated. The opposition was Terrence Farley, a former county prosecutor and the now head of the NJ Narcotics Task Force Commanders Assn. Farley is a vehement prohibitionist and we've sparred over this topic on television programs before.

I represented the Coalition for Medical Marijuana - New Jersey

Neither of us saw the questions prior to the debate and this question was particularly interesting. As an added bonus you get to see me address some of the reefer madness we encounter locally.

Essentially, "Should medical marijuana be covered by health insurance."

Looking to see what started my rebuttal ? - watch the Previous Debate Segment.

So I pose the question to you all- Should medical cannabis be covered by health insurance?

More about medical marijuana in New Jersey at