Section 1. Section 11362.5 is added to the Health and Safety
Code, to read:
11362.5. (a) This section shall be known and may be cited
as the Compassionate Use Act of 1996.
(b) (l) The people of the State of California hereby find
and declare that the purposes of the Compassionate Use Act of
1996 are as follows:
(A) To ensure that seriously ill Californians have the right
to obtain and use marijuana for medical purposes where that medical
use is deemed appropriate and has been recommended by a physician
who has determined that the person's health would benefit from
the use of marijuana in the treatment of cancer, anorexia, AIDS,
chronic pain, spasticity, glaucoma, arthritis, migraine, or any
other illness for which marijuana provides relief.
(B) To ensure that patients and their primary caregivers who
obtain and use marijuana for medical purposes upon the recommendation
of a physician are not subject to criminal prosecution or sanction.
(C) To encourage the federal and state governments to implement
a plan to provide for the safe and affordable distribution of
marijuana to all patients in medical need of marijuana.
(2) Nothing in this act shall be construed to supersede legislation
prohibiting persons from engaging in conduct that endangers others,
nor to condone the diversion of marijuana for nonmedical purposes.
(c) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, no physician
in this state shall be punished, or denied any right or privilege,
for having recommended marijuana to a patient for medical purposes.
(d) Section 11357, relating to the possession of marijuana,
and Section 11358, relating to the cultivation of marijuana,
shall not apply to a patient, or to a patient's primary caregiver,
who possesses or cultivates marijuana for the personal medical
purposes of the patient upon the written or oral recommendation
or approval of a physician.
(e) For the purposes of this section, "primary caregiver"
means the individual designated by the person exempted under
this act who has consistently assumed responsibility for the
housing, health, or safety of that person.
Sec. 2. If any provision of this measure or the application
thereof to any person or circumstance is held invalid, that invalidity
shall not affect other provisions or applications of the measure
which can be given effect without the invalid provision or application,
and to this end the provisions of this measure are severable.