Rockville Centre rally rejects legal marijuana in NY
A rally held Friday in Rockville Centre rejected the idea of legalized marijuana sales in New York state.
A coalition of Long Island educators, religious leaders and anti-drug advocates are asking state lawmakers to just say no to legalizing recreational marijuana. The group says giving weed the green light will jeopardize public safety, have a negative effect on users' mental and physical health and lead to increased use among youth.
"Our goal here today is to let elected officials know that the voters on Long Island do not want this passed," says Abu Edwards, director of government affairs for Smart Approaches to Marijuana.
Both Nassau and Suffolk counties have declared the intent to opt out of Gov. Andrew Cuomo's proposal to fully legalize marijuana. This week, Cuomo dropped the proposal from the state budget, calling it too complicated an issue to tackle before the budget deadline of April 1. But on Friday, he had a change of heart, saying he wants it back in the budget.
The rally was held outside the office of state Sen. Todd Kaminsky, who says he's still exploring the issue.
Some parents who spoke with News 12 say they don't think legalizing marijuana would help Long Island's drug problem.
Medical marijuana remains legal in New York state for patients who are certified by medical practitioners as having serious conditions, under the Compassionate Care Act.