Eleanor Holmes Norton Intros Bill to Allow Marijuana Use in Public Housing
Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC) on Tuesday introduced legislation that would permit marijuana use -- in states where it is legal -- in federally-assisted housing. The Sondra Battle Cannabis Fair Use Act was named after Sondra Battle, a DC resident who lives in Section 8 housing and uses medically-prescribed cannabis to treat her fibromyalgia. Currently, users of any controlled substance defined as illegal under federal law, including medical marijuana, can be barred from federally-assisted housing. Federal law also allows landlords to evict current residents based on their use of marijuana for any purposes, including the use of medical cannabis by state-qualified patients. Norton’s bill would treat the use of marijuana similar to the use of smoking tobacco, and make it illegal for a person to be denied federally-assisted housing for the use of marijuana -- whether medical or recreational-- in jurisdictions where cannabis has been legalized. “Residents like Sondra should not fear eviction from federally-assisted housing simply for using cannabis to treat their medical conditions. Our bill recognized today’s realities and proven needs. Individuals who live in states where medical and/or recreational marijuana is legal, but live in federally-assisted housing, should have the same access to treatment as their neighbors,” Norton said. More here.