Parents push for medical marijuana at a hearing in the Capitol

Parents of children with epilepsy hope to do more to take care of their children. They want to give their kids medical marijuana to stop the seizures, but it’s currently illegal in Pennsylvania. A hearing was held Tuesday morning in the Capitol that aimed to dispel myths and advocate for the Compassionate Use of Medical Cannabis Act, which would legalize medical marijuana in Pennsylvania.

Dana Ulrich said getting medical marijuana for her daughter is a matter of life and death. “I would love to move my family to Colorado where I know I can get the right medication for her but I can’t do that so yes I feel helpless being in Pennsylvania” said Ulrich. She said the financial burden of moving is too much to bear. That leaves her daughter to fight roughly 400 seizures a day with drugs that don’t work.

Some lawmakers are beginning to understand Ulrich’s frustration. Democratic State Senator Jim Ferlo said “if I had a sick child and I thought a plant could help I’d go through hell and high water to make sure that that child got that plant legally or illegally.” State Senators Mike Folmer and Daylin Leach are co-sponsors of Compassionate Use of Medical Cannabis Act.

They represent bipartisan support, but there are still obstacles that remain. Governor Corbett has said he won’t sign any bill that makes medical marijuana legal, but Dana Ulrich hopes he changes his mind. “What I would say to the governor is try to spend one day, one hour, one minute in the shoes of these parents and feel what it feels like to watch your child deteriorate every single day” said Ulrich.