MEDICAL MARIJUANA: San Francisco Will Issue ID Cards For Users
The city of San Francisco will issue identification cards for medicinal marijuana users within a month, the San Francisco Chronicle reports. Almost four years after the passage of Proposition 215, the city will join Oakland, Mendocino County and the town of Arcata in Humboldt County in issuing Department of Public Health cards that allow people to legally use and possess marijuana. With the card, which will cost $25, users may get their own supply of marijuana from any of the city's many "pot distribution clubs." People 18 and older may obtain the ID cards by presenting valid identification, proof of city residence and a valid doctor's statement containing a diagnosis recommending marijuana use. Young people under 18 would need to be accompanied by their parents or guardians when applying. However, the federal government still insists that any use of marijuana is illegal, and medicinal users say that San Francisco Police are still arresting them. "I continue to hear that there is still harassment by law enforcement. This has to end," Supervisor Mark Leno said. Supervisors passed Leno's proposal to issue the cards in January, but it has taken "long negotiations involving the health department, activists, Leno and city lawyers to work out the details." Leno also said that Police Chief Fred Lau has assured him that he wants his officers to stop citing medicinal marijuana users, adding "But we know that doesn't always translate into action on the street." Deputy Chief Earl Sanders said he will make sure that officers are trained to honor the new ID cards. "If this is what the citizens have come to under the leadership of our civic leaders, then the police are bound to enforce it," Sanders said (Epstein, 5/12).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.