Moms want medicinal marijuana access for kids with autism

Updated: May. 9, 2018 at 7:30 AM MST
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PHOENIX (Tucson News Now) - Women from across Arizona are fighting for their children with special needs to have access to medicinal marijuana.

The members of a volunteer group called MAMMA, Mothers Advocating Medicinal Marijuana for Autism, are in Phoenix on Wednesday, May 9, to testify at the state capitol.

Their goal is to add autism as a qualifying condition to the state's current medicinal marijuana program.

The opportunity to participate in the hearing with the Department of Health Services comes after a handful of state legislators wrote a letter to the health department urging it to pass MAMMA's petition.

Currently HIV, AIDS, Hepatitis C, Cancer, Glaucoma, ALS, Crohn's Disease, and Agitation of Alzheimer's are listed as qualifying conditions for medical marijuana in Arizona. As are chronic or debilitating diseases that cause wasting syndrome, severe pain or nausea, seizures, or severe or persistent muscle spasms. MAMMA members want autism added to that list.

Arizona isn't the only state where MAMMA members are working to have autism added as a qualifying condition for medicinal marijuana. They're also working on this in Michigan, Colorado, Louisiana, and Texas.

Aside from adding autism to the list of qualifying conditions for medical marijuana, MAMMA has other goals when it comes to medicinal marijuana access for kids with autism. MAMMA representatives say they also want to see a whole cannabis plant bill pass eventually- meaning that the whole plant would be available to kids with autism.

They say they want no restrictions on THC or CBD levels in that bill. According to the Centers for Disease Control, CBD doesn't make you high because it acts on different parts of the nervous system than THC.

MAMMA representatives want to have those levels set by each child's doctor on an individual basis  so that the levels can meet the specific needs of the child.

Testimony is expected to run through Thursday.

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