Sherry Hoover, a retired nurse suffering from stage 4 cancer, has taken Michigan to court to challenge its newly imposed medical marijuana testing rules. The lawsuit filed in a federal court seeks to obtain a temporary restraining order so that the plaintiff can continue accessing her marijuana-derived medicine which has since become hard to obtain due to the new testing rules imposed by the state regulator.
The 57-year old plaintiff was diagnosed with mastocytosis leukemia in 2011. She used several prescription drugs, such as fentanyl patches and Norco, with limited effect until she discovered that medical marijuana could improve her appetite, alleviate her pain and enable her to sleep better.
Before April 1 this year, LARA (Licensing and Regulatory Affairs) permitted untested medical marijuana products to be sold in medical marijuana dispensaries. However, those untested tinctures, oils and other medicinal products made by registered caregivers would no longer be sold without being tested once the April 1 deadline passed.
The testing rules have since taken effect, and Hoover is finding it hard to access the products which have been instrumental in giving her a better quality of life. The lawsuit she filed on Wednesday (June 5) seeks to compel the state to extend the commencement of enforcing the testing rules to December 31.
She argues that the current restrictions have resulted in stock-outs in the only two licensed medical marijuana dispensaries which carried the products she uses. Continuing to enforce the testing rules may therefore leave her with no choice but to resort to the black market for her medicine, a step she doesn’t want to take.
The suit states that the four licensed testing facilities cannot cope with the demand for testing services from licensed cultivators, manufacturers and caregivers. Additionally, the added steps, such as transporting the untested products to the testing facilities and then hiring transport firms permitted to carry tested products to medical marijuana dispensaries prolongs the duration needed to get tinctures and other medical marijuana products made by caregivers to the dispensing points where patients can buy them.
In short, Hoover argues in her suit that the state is violating her rights of access to medical marijuana products and yet she is licensed and duly authorized to use such products.
This isn’t the first time that Sherry Hoover is suing the state. Last year, she successfully sued LARA to compel it to extend deadline imposed for unlicensed dispensaries to get the necessary permits or close by December 31, 2018. Her lawsuit was successful and the deadline was extended to April 1 this year.
The Flowr Corporation (TSX.V: FLWR) (OTC: FLWPF) and Sugarmade Inc. (OTCQB: SGMD) long for the day when all the kinks in the way medical marijuana is regulated are fixed so that these seemingly endless deadline extensions and lawsuits in Michigan come to an end.
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