A measure allowing medical marijuana users to receive concealed carry permits for weapons has been approved by the Arkansas Senate. Representative Aaron Pilkington introduced the bill, which was approved by the House of Representatives last Tuesday prior to being approved by the entire Senate on Friday.
According to the proposed legislation, a person’s eligibility for medical marijuana cannot be utilized to decide whether they are qualified for a firearms license. A person who participates in the medical cannabis protocol does not become a chronic or persistent user of a prohibited substance, which may prevent them from receiving concealed-carry approval, according to an amendment to state law that makes this clear.
Additionally, during any probe of an individual’s suitability for concealed carry, the state’s health department is not permitted to reveal that individual’s medical history to the state’s law enforcement agencies. While some states have taken action to protect marijuana patients’ and users’ gun rights, this law is specific to the concealed carry concern.
Although permits for concealed carry are not a requirement in Arkansas, certain citizens choose to obtain one to make trips to other states and be more informed when speaking with authorities.
This law is being introduced as federal courts consider whether cannabis users should have access to firearms. In connection with ongoing litigation challenging the government’s prohibition on medicinal marijuana users owning weapons, the United States Justice Department recently filed a brief with a federal appeals court.
Many of the concerns stated by the DOJ in the submitted brief are echoed in earlier submissions, such as in a federal district court that rejected the case that is currently being appealed. The Biden administration, however, has emphasized again in its most recent brief the “wide-ranging consequences” of a decision in favor of the plaintiffs.
By virtue of the federal court’s decision that the nationwide prohibition is unlawful, a Republican Pennsylvania lawmaker recently urged law enforcement to abolish state restrictions on marijuana consumers being able to purchase firearms, with a focus on medical cannabis patients. A significant House panel in Maryland conducted hearings on a plan to safeguard firearms rights for the state’s medical marijuana consumers in February.
In November, Arkansas citizens rejected a measure that would have legalized cannabis for adults. The legislation that was approved by the Senate is more narrowly oriented toward concealed carry than it is toward legalizing cannabis. The legislation received approval with sufficient backing in the legislature to overturn a possible veto. It now moves to Governor Sarah Huckabee Sanders for approval. It is unclear what her conclusion will be.
As some companies such as IGC Pharma Inc. (NYSE American: IGC) develop formulations from marijuana and gain FDA approval, there is unlikely to be debate about patients’ gun ownership rights since they won’t be regarded as people consuming a banned substance.
NOTE TO INVESTORS: The latest news and updates relating to IGC Pharma Inc. (NYSE American: IGC) are available in the company’s newsroom at https://cnw.fm/IGC
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