LOUISIANA (KLFY) — Louisiana is one of 29 states in the country where recreational marijuana use is still illegal.
One cannabis nurse has advocated for recreational use for years and told News 10 that the only way it can work is for education on marijuana to enhance.
Shonda Broom said that the way cannabis has always been portrayed has deterred the outlook it has been having.
“The more education we get out there, the more people who realize there is a program out there. We will have more people who will speak up during public hearings and attend these different sessions when these bills are being passed or even brought to the table so that they can use their voice in order for this change to come,” Broom said.
In June of 2021, Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards signed House Bill 652 reducing the penalty for possession of small amounts of marijuana. In August of 2022, act 473 prohibits police from using the smell of marijuana as probable cause to search. The state is moving more in the direction of legalization, but Broom understands there should be limits to its use by children.
Broom said, “I have seen cases where epilepsy [in] children having 20 to 30 seizures a day and they go down to two or three a day. You do have a positive with the use of children. At the same time, it is just like alcohol. You don’t want a 15-year-old running around with a bottle of Budweiser beer.”
Based on how the prohibition on alcohol was lifted, broom said that she believes marijuana regulation can go down a similar path to legalization in Louisiana.
“It is all about safety. If we can get to the point like it is with alcohol, then I do see us going head strong seeing that recreational change in a few years.”
Broom and other advocates in the state said that they will continue their push for more education about cannabis as Louisiana approaches the legalization of recreational use.