Editorial: House Speaker Will Weatherford Speaks Out Against Amendment 2

Speaker Weatherford Joins Growing Don’t Let Florida Go to Pot Coalition

Florida House Speaker Will Weatherford recently expressed serious concerns about Amendment 2 and the impact it would have on Florida’s economy.  He joins a growing statewide coalition of elected officials, law enforcement leaders, business owners, and members of the Florida medical community as part of the Don’t Let Florida Go to Pot coalition.
“Let’s not hide behind labels such as ‘compassionate’ or ‘medical’ when debating this amendment. Instead, let’s call it what it really is: a de facto legalization of marijuana in Florida,” said Speaker Weatherford. “From higher dropout rates, to possible health complications, and even workplace challenges, Amendment 2’s risks pose a threat to Florida’s future economic expansion.”
Weatherford is lending his voice to a coalition including former Florida Governor Jeb Bush and other elected officials, the Florida Chamber of Commerce, the Associated Builders and Contractors of Florida, and the Florida Trucking Association. The coalition is a collective effort of local and state organizations working together to educate Floridians on the dangers of marijuana and efforts to allow marijuana for supposed medical uses in Florida. It is conducting an educational campaign on problems it sees with Amendment 2 which will be on the Florida ballot in November.
According to national drug policy expert Calvina Fay, Executive Director of the Drug Free America Foundation, distributors of marijuana as provided through Amendment 2 would operate virtually unchecked. “Amendment 2 does not require background checks or for distributors to have any medical credentials whatsoever,” said Fay. “The result will be pot shops in our neighborhoods, in our shopping centers, and near places where our children play.”
A recent report from the Florida Department of Health (DOH) revealed Amendment 2 would lead to more than 417,000 recipients if adopted by voters.  The amendment would also enable 250,000 caregivers who are not required to have any training, credentials, or even background checks to sell marijuana through an estimated 1,800 pot shops statewide. The stores will not be supervised by medical professionals, but will be regulated by only 13 DOH inspectors statewide.
Drug Free America Foundation, Inc. is a national and international drug policy organization promoting effective and sound drug policies, education and prevention. www.dfaf.org.
The Don’t Let Florida Go to Pot coalition is a collective effort of more than 100 local and state organizations to educate Floridians on the dangers of marijuana. From law enforcement to substance abuse groups, the coalition is working statewide to ensure public safety and the future of our youth.
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