The Sunshine State AKA Florida has experienced a considerable loss in their tourism dollars and is also seeing a decrease in the number of snowbirds that are flocking to the state. The loss of tourism and number of residents who live in the Sunshine State during the winter months is in large part contributed to cannabis legalization in states such as Colorado, Washington, and Oregon. Many tourists are choosing to go to one of these states to spend their vacation time as well as their hard-earned dollars.
Elderly who retire to Florida are changing their tune and heading to rec pot states. They are finding that cannabis is cheaper than their prescription drugs and offers them a healthier lifestyle. Florida has faced issues with trying to legalize cannabis for many years now. With corrupt politicians and special private interest groups controlling the outcome along the way, there has been one blockade after another when it comes to having safe legal access to medical cannabis in the state of Florida. Luckily there is somewhat of a system in place, but it is only benefiting a small handful of individuals.
In April of 2016, Governor Scott signed HB 307 allowing entities to be implemented that are licensed to dispense medical cannabis to patients who qualify based on terminal status. In July of 2016, the doors to the first dispensary opened in Tallahassee and has been providing medicinal marijuana to qualifying patients since. Trulieve which is a part of George Hackney, Inc. was thrilled to be the first entity in the state to supply medicinal marijuana and were even more thrilled when they opened the doors to their second dispensary on Thursday.
The newest location can be found at 24761 US Highway 19N #630 in Clearwater, Florida. Trulieve offers both low THC and high THC cannabis products at their locations and they provide delivery services statewide to qualifying patients. Trulieve is expected to open more locations before the end of the year.
Now that Trulieve has opened its doors in Clearwater, qualifying patients in the area can finally start getting some relief by utilizing a safe all natural plant. Pharmaceutical drugs and prescription drugs alone account for more deaths than cocaine and heroin combined in the United States. Both intentional overdoses and accidental overdoses have been on the rise continually with no sign of relief in sight.
That was until cannabis became legal in the state of Colorado. Statistics have shown that overdose rates from prescription drugs have dropped by 25% or more since cannabis was made legal on a recreationally or retail basis. Other states are starting to see similar results and Florida could stand to use some of these results themselves. The Sunshine State also has considerable problems with heroin, cocaine, and pills.
Being that they are right on the Gulf of Mexico and Atlantic Ocean it makes them a major port for drug trafficking. By allowing safe access to medical cannabis in the state of Florida many people could see a higher quality of life. We can only hope that this November, residents will be able to vote for a more comprehensive and helpful medical marijuana program that includes all the patients that could benefit from cannabis, not just those who are terminally ill.
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