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Medical marijuana supporters urge Senate to pass bill
Rochester, N.Y. Advocates of the Compassionate Care Act are urging lawmakers to pass the bill before the current legislative session ends next week.
The bill is currently at the Senate Rules Committee, which is the final step before it goes to the full Senate for a vote.
On Friday, supporters gathered at the Breast Cancer Coalition of Rochester to send a message to lawmakers.
Think about the fact that you have the power in your hands to alleviate suffering, said Sue Nill Kidera of Victor. Very few people get to do something like that, especially on this scale.
Kidera is a stage four colon cancer survivor. She supports medical marijuana because of her personal experience with treatment and chemotherapy and the damaging effects it has had on her quality of life.
Christine Emerson also supports medical marijuana. Her daughter Julia, only 7, has epilepsy. At one point, Julia suffered through 80 to 100 full body seizures a month.
I firmly believe there was a time in Julia's life when she was going to die and I think any one of her seizures because they're so horrific can take her life, said Emerson. We're not willing to wait and sit until it happens. We need to do something this year.
Assemblymember Harry Bronson and Senator Ted OBrien were also at the coalition to show their support.
It's important that we pass it now because as soon as we pass it the suffering of a lot of people fighting a lot of different medical conditions will be alleviated, said Senator OBrien.
The Compassionate Care Act must reach the senate floor by June 19 in order to be considered this session.
If the bill passes, New York would become the 23rd state to legalize medical marijuana.