On January 11, 2010, the New Jersey State Assembly and Senate approved A804/S119, which establishes “The New Jersey Compassionate Use Medical Marijuana Act,” which removed state-level criminal penalties on the use and possession of medical marijuana (also referred to as medical weed, medical pot or medical cannabis) by qualifying patients who obtain a recommendation from their New Jersey licensed physician. Patients will be issued ID cards by the New Jersey Department of Health and Senior Services and may designate a registered caregiver to assist in obtaining marijuana. Though this created the medical marijuana program in NJ that now contains over 15,000 registered patients, marijuana was still considered a “schedule 1” drug. With new Appellate Court hearings in October 2017, this could change in the future, allowing New Jersey to further expand its medical marijuana program.
New Jersey’s medical cannabis law is the first of all the legal states, to prohibit home cultivation of marijuana, and require patients to obtain a limited amount of marijuana, from state-monitored dispensaries.
Patients in New Jersey diagnosed with one of the following severe, debilitating, or life-threatening medical conditions, are afforded legal protection under the New Jersey Compassionate Use Medical Marijuana Act, as per Senate Bill 119:
New Jersey’s Medicinal Marijuana Review Panel has held hearings on behalf of doctors and patients who are looking to expand qualifying conditions to include migraines, anxiety, chronic pain, and more.
People who meet medical marijuana qualifications in New Jersey are often hesitant to use therapeutic cannabis because they are afraid they’ll lose their jobs if they test positive for weed. The state legislature attempted to address this issue during the 2016-‘17 session.
Bills were introduced that would prohibit employers from taking any sort of harmful action against an employee who uses medicinal weed for either testing positive for marijuana use or holding a New Jersey medical cannabis card. The only exception would be if the employer was able to prove that the employee’s use of medical pot would impair his or her ability to perform job-related duties.
There are cases pending in courts across the country involving employees who feel they were wrongfully terminated due to their medical cannabis use, but those cases had yet to be decided as of this writing.
This is a major step toward protecting the rights of employees who use medical marijuana. Several other states have anti-discrimination provisions within their medical cannabis regulations, and we hope New Jersey ultimately follows suit to change its medical marijuana qualifications. MarijuanaDoctors.com will keep you updated on this and other cannabis-related matters as developments warrant. We will also continue to provide you important information regarding how to obtain a New Jersey medical cannabis card and much more.