Letter: Dispensary asks for support

You will see why local access to these cannabis derivative products is essential, say directors of the Medicine Tree.

The Kootenay’s Medicine Tree started quietly and professionally providing access to medical cannabis products in August in our new location on 68 Avenue.

We have applied for and been issued a business license by the City of Grand Forks and currently operate in the legal “grey-area” which amounts to favourable court decisions and police tolerance that has allowed dispensaries like ours to operate elsewhere in B.C.

An applicant for our services must have been diagnosed with a medical condition by a physician or nurse practitioner and have medical records to substantiate the diagnosis before membership in our dispensary is issued and careful, monitored access to medical cannabis products is granted.

All was going well as time passed, our lab tested/produced products were helping local cancer patients manage symptoms and fight back against their tumours, children with debilitating forms of epilepsy reduce their seizures (drastically in some cases), chronic pain patients addicted to opiates reduce and cease use of opiates, seniors gain sleep and pain relief by leaving toxic pharma meds behind for cannabis, the list is long in such a short time…four months.

And then we were visited by plainclothes RCMP constables, who were in the very awkward position of informing us that is we did not cease our work without a license from Health Canada’s new commercial system, because of only two complaints filed from the community, they would be forced into an enforcement action against our dispensary (arrests, warrant, seizure of evidence, doors locked). We do not blame the RCMP, they are in a hard position where they must enforce a bad law.

Because companies licensed under Health Canada’s MMPR regulations are prohibited from selling cannabis capsules, other edibles, oils, creams or suppositories and because the vast majority of our membership requires non-smokable cannabis products, we cannot apply for this license and cut off these very vulnerable people.

Our non-smokable products are produced by private B.C. companies and are lab tested; we are able to provide safe, standardized products of known potency, achieving reliability in dosing—a first for local medical cannabis patients.

We are asking area residents to please show your support for local access to safe, standardized medical cannabis options for the chronically and terminally ill who require this medicine, by writing to Mayor Konrad, Grand Forks city council, and local media like the Grand Forks Gazette and providing us with a copy. We hope that with enough public support the RCMP can show our dispensary tolerance, like that extended to the five dispensaries in Vernon, soon to be three in Kelowna, and one in Nelson.

To those who oppose what we are doing, please take the time to either come down and talk to us and/or conduct even brief research into the human body’s endo-cannabinoid system and the vast medical uses of cannabinoids like CBD and THC.

When you watch a child’s daily seizures go from 100 a day to nearly zero after the administration of a cannabis concentrate product, you will see why local access to these cannabis derivative products is essential.

Jim Leslie, Marvin Wyers, Wendy Brisco

The Kootenay’s Medicine Tree, Grand Forks

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