Melissa Etheridge is not only a musician of legendary repute, with several Grammy’s to her name, but she is also a breast cancer survivor. New York has officially entered and left behind the last days of its legislative session to legalize medical marijuana. Melissa Etheridgeon pressured Governor Andrew Cuomo and the leaders of the state Senate to pass the Compassionate Care Act, which now has legalized medical marijuana use for numerous diseases including cancer, multiple sclerosis, epilepsy and HIV/AIDS, among others.
Etheridge was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2004, and she believes that medical marijuana helped her to recover her health. She says that instead of taking 3 or 4 prescriptions, she utilized ‘natural’ marijuana instead for beneficial treatment of her cancer symptoms. She underwent chemotherapy and said that it felt like every cell in her body was dying, but she is thankful for the diagnosis because it woke her up.
She didn’t want to use Vicodin, steroids, or prescription pills to deal with the pain – she turned to marijuana. She said she didn’t get high, she just smoked to be functional and deal with the pain. That experience is what gives her strength to support the Compassionate Care Act today.
She has even arranged for patients and caregivers who worked for the passage of the bill to collect signatures to support the legislation at her concerts. She believes that the Compassionate Care Act, A.6357-C (Gottfried) / S.4406-C (Savino), will alleviate the suffering of thousands of New Yorkers with serious and debilitating conditions by allowing them access to medical marijuana through the supervision of their healthcare providers.
“Tonight, I am calling on Governor Cuomo and the New York State Legislature to stand with patients across New York and pass the Compassionate Care Act without further delay,” Etheridge said. “As a cancer survivor, I know the ravages of a serious illness, and patients who are suffering deserve access to a medication that can provide them relief.”
“Tonight, I stand with those patients, with their caregivers, and with the vast majority of New Yorkers who support medical marijuana,” Etheridge said. “It’s time for leaders in Albany to listen to the people of New York and to show some compassion to those who are suffering needlessly; it’s time for them to pass the Compassionate Care Act.”
The Compassionate Care Act has made it through the final stages.