Wichita family fights for medical marijuana

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A Wichita, Kansas family traveled to Topeka Tuesday to testify before state lawmakers about making an exception to the law that criminalizes THC oil. 

Gwen Hartley’s daughter, Lola, is 12 years old and has microcephaly, cerebral palsy and dwarfism. 

Hartley said she and her husband, Scott, are willing to make the seven-hour trip to Colorado to get low THC oil to help Lola with her seizures. The oil is derived from the marijuana plant, but contains small amounts of THC, which is the psychoactive canniboid that causes a high.

Because low THC oil is illegal in Kansas, Hartley cannot bring it back into the state without fear of being arrested or having her daughter taken away. 

Proposed legislation in the Kansas House, House Bill 2244, would allow parents to travel to Colorado to get THC oil and bring it back into Kansas legally.

The House Judiciary Committee heard the bill on Tuesday. Two Kansas City-area lawmakers sit on the committee.

Low THC oil is derived from the marijuana plant but contains small amounts of THC, the psychoactive canniboid that causes a high.

Gwen and Scott Hartley have already lost one of their daughters, Claire, due to the same medical problems that Lola experiences.

“I like to hear the pros and cons, the unintended consequences that might come up if we change policy in Kansas,” said Rep. Kellie Warren, an Overland Park Republican.

Another lawmaker on the committee said she will closely consider the bill.

“I am definitely willing to consider anything that will help children…the time has come, we need to take a close look at that,” said Rep. Pam Curtis, D-Kansas City, Kansas.

The Kansas Bureau of Investigation said that it does not support the bill.

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