RALEIGH, N.C. — The North Carolina Compassionate Care Act passed a full Senate vote Tuesday and will now head to the House.
What You Need To Know
- Medical marijuana accessibility gaining momentum in the state legislature
- Corey Stahl, a hemp dispensary owner who suffers from Crohn's disease, says the proposed legislation is good for her but bad for several of her customers
- The application fee for a medical marijuana license is $50,000
The bill would legalize medical marijuana in North Carolina, but only for a small group of people.
“It's OK. When you called this morning, I said, 'oh God, I hope I can do this without crying,'" Corey Stahl said.
When you hear Stahl's story, you begin to understand why this is so emotional for her.
“I was on over 30 pharmaceuticals. I was homebound, applying for disability. My husband wasn't able to work and needed to care for me and our two children at the time. No quality of life," Stahl explained.
In 2017, Stahl was nearing 300 pounds.
“I was homebound for two years, and I spent the majority of my time in bathroom," Stahl said.
Now, she's about half that weight, and all that medicine she used to take, those 30 different daily drugs, have been replaced with hemp.
“I love smoking it. It's great because it's inhaled so it helps for immediate release. It's also an anti-inflammatory so it's replaced all of my anti-inflammatory pharmaceuticals," Stahl said.
Stahl suffers from Crohn's disease. A few years ago, while living in Colorado, she discovered how marijuana benefits her condition and has never looked back.
She and her husband Eric own a hemp dispensary called Modern Apotheca and an adjacent hemp lounge called the The Burnt Pot.
She now depends on it every day.
“I definitely can start to feel inflammation in my body. It might sound a little weird, but I just feel a little off or legs feel kinda heavy, my stomach, obviously, I can have a lot more pain. It helps relieve a lot of symptoms of Crohn's," Stahl said when describing what it was like if she doesn't smoke.
It also helps her do things like take a walk with her daughter. Something she couldn't even do a few years ago. Now, there’s possibly even more relief coming Stahl’s way.
“I'm super excited about it. I think it's been a long time coming in North Carolina, one of the last states to make it available for everybody," Stahl said.
Under the proposed legislation only people with debilitating medical conditions like cancer, epilepsy, ALS, AIDS, Crohn's and a few others would be eligible for medical marijuana.
Stahl says the bill is far too limiting for the state and for her customers.
"There are so many conditions that people are trying to seek relief from pain and all the autoimmune diseases. This state will have lowest number of conditions on their medical marijuana bill," Stahl said.
For now, Stahl can only do so much as she takes care of herself with the same hemp she provides her customers.
“Between four and five times a day. I usually wake up in the morning and smoke, and then, depending on how I'm feeling, I might smoke a couple times throughout the middle of the day," Stahl said.
A medical cannabis production commission would oversee the rules for growing and selling marijuana in this state. However, the commission would issue no more than 10 licenses for companies to supply medical marijuana.
The application fee alone to apply for a license is $50,000.