The California Nurses Association/National Nurses United, the nation’s largest state organization of nurses, on Tuesday announced that it has endorsed Proposition 64, the Adult Use of Marijuana Act, which will be on the statewide ballot in November.“California Nurses believe strongly that the prohibition and criminalization of marijuana has ruined generations of lives, wasted hundreds of millions of taxpayer of dollars and failed to protect the public health and safety,” said Deborah Burger, president, California Nurses Association/NNU.
“California needs a new approach and Proposition 64 is carefully crafted to strictly regulate adult-use marijuana while funding critical youth programs and safeguarding children, workers and local communities,” Burger said. “On balance, Proposition 64 is significantly better for public health and safety than the broken status quo, and we are pleased to endorse it.”
Other endorsers include: California League of Conservation Voters, California Council of Land Trusts, California State NAACP, California Democratic Party, Courage Campaign, Equality California, Law Enforcement Against Prohibition, National Latino Officers Association, William C. Velasquez Institute and United Food and Commercial Workers Western States Council.Current and former elected officials in support include Lieutenant Governor Gavin Newsom, Sacramento Mayor-elect Darrell Steinberg, Democratic U.S. Reps. Ted Lieu and Jared Huffman, Republican U.S. Rep Dana Rohrabacher, State Senator Mark Leno, Assembly Speaker Emeritus Toni G. Atkins, Assemblymembers Rob Bonta, David Chiu, Susan Talamantes Eggman, Cristina Garcia, Reggie Jones-Sawyer, Kevin McCarty and Bill Quirk and Tom Campbell, the former Republican Congressman and finance director for the State of California.
There is a significant amount of opposition to Prop. 64, not just the expected resistance from pot haters, but also by some cannabis activists who fear a replay of the loss of patient access that happened in Washington state after recreational legalization measure I-502 passed there.
According to these activists, mom-and-pop medical marijuana businesses, which have been allowed to do business as patient collectives for 20 years now in the state, will in many lose their legal ability to grow weed and distribute the medicine to patients. They are concerned about the California legalization measure being, like Washington’s, more friendly to deep-pocketed investors and corporations than to the community which established cannabis in the state in the first place.