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Ashley Weber, paralyzed MMJ patient and mom, wins federal housing fight

Categories: Marijuana

ashley.weber.hospital.205x205.jpg
Big photos, video below.
Ashley Weber is a quadriplegic who lives with her young son, Collin, in a house whose rent she can afford due to a Section 8 housing voucher courtesy of the federal Department of Housing and Urban Development. But in December 2012, after revealing that she uses medical marijuana for pain management, the Longmont Housing Authority sent her a termination notice. Since then, Weber's been fighting this edict, and after a year of struggle, the LHA has informed her she can stay due to a new policy she inspired. Photos, video and details below.

Weber tells her own story on an Indiegogo fundraising page she launched after receiving the LHA letter. Here's how she describes the accident that changed her life.

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Weber as seen in her senior picture circa 2002.
I was injured in a rollover car accident in December of 2002 due to a drunk driver. I was 18 years old at the time, and was finishing up the 1st semester of my 2nd year in college. I had just graduated from high school in May of 2002, and would've graduated with my Associates of Science in May 2003. I was ahead in the game of life as far as education and experience to pursue the career I wanted in the medical field.

I ended up breaking C1, C4, C5, and exploding C6. Almost getting the chance to be in a ground breaking clinical trial over in Israel, I was no longer a candidate due to the fracture of C-1. After about a 10 hour surgery I was left with plates and screws from C-3 to T1, with anterior and posterior incisions, as well as one on my hip where the doctors had to take bone to make a new C-6 vertebrae (that had exploded). Transition from ICU at St. Anthony Hospital to Craig Hospital was hard, I knew I had so much to still yet overcome. I called Craig Hospital 'home' after the course of a 6 month long stay. In that 6 months i acquired spinal cord fluid leak (where the scf accumulated into pockets at the base of my brain stem causing infinite amount of pain), hyper-calciumia twice (blood stream being poisoned by calcium seeping from my bones, usually caused by sudden loss of movement in an active person), gallbladder and appendix removed at the same time.

Despite the damage done to her in the crash, Weber persevered, with help in recent years from medical marijuana, which she uses in concert with her overall pain management regimen.

As a licensed patient and cannabis advocate, Weber saw nothing wrong with including MMJ-related payment records among medical receipts she was required to submit for renewal of the federal housing voucher. But while medical marijuana use was legal in Colorado at the time of the 2012 filing, it's still prohibited by the feds. That was the reason for the termination letter, which references "the illegal use of a controlled substance in accordance with federal law, LHA Administrative policy and HUD regulations." Moreover, the letter goes on, "LHA has reasonable cause to believe you are using marijuana, which is still an illegal controlled substance under federal law."

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Jeff Gard.
After receiving this notice, Weber began telling her story publicly, and an article in the Boulder Weekly about her plight caught the eye of lawyer Jeff Gard, who is both a longtime defender of marijuana causes and a man with experience taking on public-housing regulations on behalf of the disabled.

"In 1995, my former business partner and I set the precedent for reasonable accommodations in public housing for the disabled in a case called Roe v. Boulder Housing Authority," Gard notes. "That case established that the housing authority had to attempt reasonable accommodation of the disabled before they attempted to evict, to the extent that there was a nexus between the disability and the reason for the eviction."

To Gard, Weber's case, which he handled pro bono, was very similar. "She's disabled, and she uses medical marijuana to accommodate her disability -- and she's not impacting anybody else," he points out. "So I thought they should let her in under the reasonable accommodation law."

Continue for more about Ashley Weber's fight against eviction for her use of medical marijuana, including more photos and a video.


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51 comments
rockymissouri1
rockymissouri1

Wonderful news, however it happened......!! Well done... But seriously ...this should never have been this way.

GuestWho
GuestWho topcommenter

Congrats Ashley and nice job Jeff Gard.  It's refreshing to see a lawyer working with people to resolve a conflict, acting as a facilitator instead of a defender.  

Suni Daze
Suni Daze

Thank God ....... and Marijuana !!!

Kevin A. Mahmalji
Kevin A. Mahmalji

"If you don't like marijuana, then you're not going to like the future" I expect many more victories in the future for marijuana advocates and consumers. Here's to a bright future!

HistoryRepeats
HistoryRepeats

2016 could be a game changer for the enforcement of federal marijuana laws in this country. Bush wouldn't have let it get this far. Obama is pro-pot. The next guy may not be. You won't have to ask the feds twice to start enforcing federal marijuana laws again if instructed to by the next administration. One thing is clear: The sheep will go out and vote for one of the two corrupt gangs.

KathleenChippi
KathleenChippi topcommenter

The law currently backs the landlord and without a court actually ruling on the real issue which is: does federal law (CSA and International Treaties) preempt state MMJ laws? (specifically - medical - there is no question the feds preempt on non medical cannabis law). This 'agreement' made between Jeff Gard and the Longmont Housing Authority so that Ashley does not lose housing does not answer the real issue.

"Kanovsky told him that under its official policy, HUD could not allow disabled clients to use medical marijuana while federal law deems it to be illegal."

Longmont Housing Authority wouldn't have any right to expel patients over MMJ just like they have no right to expel patients over any pharmaceutical drugs they use -- IF MMJ was an established state right (by the courts). The CO Supreme Court has refused to hear our arguments in two previous appeals made by myself and the PCRLP (Patient and Caregiver Rights Litigation Project)

The feds like to SAY they preempt on MMJ (specifically) BUT there is currently NO CASE LAW on IF federal law (CSA and International Treaties) preempts state MMJ (specific) law -- every time the feds have won in the courts addressing MMJ (like Raich) it has been interstate commerce decision.

Colorado currently has the Coats case in front of the Colorado Supreme Court. Without arguments addressing the federal preemption issue the High Court will be forced to agree with the lower courts that an employer has the right to fire a state registered MMJ employe over a THC positive urine test, even if the medicine was consumed on off work hours.....The Coats attorney is conceding to federal preemption out the gate. Since Coats concedes on federal preemption -- he is not arguing for his right to use cannabis as medicine in Colorado, which makes it a state 'privilege' and gives his employer the right to fire him over his off hours use.

If MMJ use was a right, then the landlord would not be permitted to discriminate against tenants just like they can't discriminate over a persons pharmaceutical drug use. Until a court is asked to clarify the right, landlords get to continue to evict.

Anyone interested in helping raise money/donate to add an amicus (additional federal preemption arguments) in the Coats case can email me at oshalee1969@yahoo.com. We have less than 2 weeks to get it in and to try to save MMJ in Colorado and prevent poor precedent nationwide.

HistoryRepeats
HistoryRepeats

Win 1 for the good guys plus this chick is totally bangeable.

paullucas714
paullucas714 topcommenter

This kind of cruelty is insane.

Amber Rae Schultes
Amber Rae Schultes

I'm so happy for her!! Stupid company policies were about to separate her and her son forever!! Had she gone to a nursing home, her son woulda went straight into the system. And that's retarded when he has a mother that loves and wants to care for him!! It would have created two people being facility dependent which costs twice as much as paying for their home they share together!! I hope they really enjoy their time together! God bless them!

LindaLee Law
LindaLee Law

Since our govt is run buy a majority of men, it is this "I am the head of the household and what I say goes " that is the problem. Men , who are known to be the worst when it comes to confronting their health an needs, are telling us how we can keep healthy. NOt for this American.

LindaLee Law
LindaLee Law

This is how it should be. Denver Housing Authority just sent out Memos to all Participants: Any consumption, use, growing , etc. will lead to loss of housing voucher. The irony is that most who live in subsidized housing are disabled/poor on that pos Medicaid, and are licensed to use medical marijuana,. The FDA and the Conservatives want to deprive citizens of what is their right to their health care simply because they don't agree, don';t use ( never!! but are drinkers and pill poppers) and even if they did, they would sell out to Big Pharma for a campaign contribution. The Feds and Politiicians, the whores and pimps they are, will legalize it when they see the $$$ that is being brought in. We all have our price but those of us who need it, are not allowed to pay a price for medicine . Talk about the Dark Ages of Health Care.

Sydney Vitae
Sydney Vitae

...Because that makes sense. Is it that important to the government to hurt those who need our help the most?

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

Good thing those ignorant lying asswipes who wrote A20 and A64 explicitly surrendered and allowed Government, Landlords, Employers and Insurers the right to DISCRIMINATE against any/all marijuana users.




ayweber7
ayweber7

At that time, unfortunately that was the only thing keeping my head up ;)


KathleenChippi
KathleenChippi topcommenter

Until the Colorado Supreme Court finds MMJ a right and not a privilege patients will not only be in fear of housing loss but:

It will mean parents will continue to be charged with child abuse and/or neglect for MMJ cultivation/use and possibly lose their kids.

It will mean patients who rely on cannabis to function/live (often w/o deadly pills) will/can continue to lose jobs over testing positive for their natural, safe medicine they use on off-work hours.

It will mean people will/can lose their occupational licenses over their use of MMJ.

It will mean patients will/can be denied student loans.

It will mean patients will/can be denied government aid.

It will mean patients will/can lose their right to a firearm.

It will mean patients will/can be arrested......this is not fair and not good and defiantly not in the spirit of the law Coloradan's voted for in 2000.

HistoryRepeats
HistoryRepeats

@DonkeyHotay  If they didn't craft the legislation this way the SHEEP would have never even considered passing A64. Brainwashing doesn't just happen overnight. It is a long gradual process that takes even longer to be un-done.

HistoryRepeats
HistoryRepeats

@ayweber7 @HistoryRepeats  It was totally a compliment. You're hot. Just giving you crap, I totally agree with your case I was just pointing out that the federals still consider people like you and me criminals for our use of this miracle plant......I am a libertarian and I believe everyone is free to do as they wish as long as they are not doing another person harm.......Probably not a good idea to give an authoritarian government office a reason to come after you......The JEW comment was just to get the other freak on here talking. Peace and good luck to you.. :)

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@KathleenChippi  "Until the Colorado Supreme Court finds MMJ a right and not a privilege ..."


Too bad the fuckwits who wrote A20 didn't simply and explicitly declare medical use of marijuana to be a legal right, eh?


Too bad the lying incompetent scampaigners behind A64 didn't learn from 12 years of legal failures from A20 and explicitly create and protect the right of individuals to possess, grow and use marijuana, eh?


Too bad all the clueless "advocates" in other states are relying on the same FAILED Colorado models and aren't smart enough to learn from the many painful errors and FIX them before repeating the same idiocy.




FreeTheWeed
FreeTheWeed

So they failed on purpose?

Stupid stoners.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@HistoryRepeats "The JEW comment was just ..."


... you being the lowlife scumbag bigoted piece of shit that you are.



ashleydesignsllc
ashleydesignsllc

@donkeyHotay Did I mention "BHANG" is my FAV EDIBLE!??? (Chocolate)

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@HistoryRepeats ... so when are you going to "bang" her, you lowlife bigoted racist piece of shit?


HistoryRepeats
HistoryRepeats

@ayweber7 @WeGotsItGood  you did a good thing. your actions could end up changing these policies for good here and help other people who are suffering and fucking broke. there are some piece of shit assholes on here (DonkeyHotay) who think that people like you shouldn't be protected by marijuana legislation because he is a fucking douchebag.

HistoryRepeats
HistoryRepeats

@DonkeyHotay @WeGotsItGood  shut, up freak. you'll bite on anything. The very A64 that you have been railing against could very well have been the straw that broke the proverbial camel's back on prohibition of this substance as it has set off a domino effect around the globe. It could also have played a role in the success of Ashley Weber's (chick above) case coming out in the positive. dumb fucking fucker.

ayweber7
ayweber7

@WeGotsItGood Absolutely correct! if you took blood pressure medicine on a daily basis for your health and paying out-of-pocket, would that not be included in your "medical receipts" folder sir? Furthermore; medical marijuana has been legal in Co for over 12 years, it's about time to amend! State and Federal laws here conflict...


As for the "JEWing down my costs" comment >>> all i have to say to that is because of my Disability I LIVE off less than $1000/month, my ACCESSIBLE vehicle is about to take a shit, i CAN"T WALK or use my HANDS, AND yet you are ANGRY...

WeGotsItGood
WeGotsItGood

@FreeTheWeed  Ok ok , but I just read that this chick wanted to jew down her costs so bad that she turned in her fucking weed receipts to the god-damn MAN for christ's sake! A federal housing voucher, nonetheless. Forshame.

George
George

@DonkeyHotay @KathleenChippiIt's the Soros/Monsanto agenda. Not stupidity, but rather well-planned attempt to control the "legal" cannabis market. Anyone with only HALF a brain can see what is going on.

George
George

@DonkeyHotay What is the matter with these people, satisfied with A64? Why would they vilify people who want real legalization if they are really for legalization themselves?

Like Mendacious Mason Tvert, these people didn't read, much less comprehend, A64.

A64 could have said anything, and it would have passed. NO ONE read it or understood it. They voted on the lies promoted by Mason and Lyin' Brian Vicente, that this was "legalization" and an "End to Prohibition". Nothing could be further from the truth. Anyone with HALF a brain can see that this is a set up for big business and big pharma to take TOTAL CONTROL of cannabis, and the stupid stoners think this is "legalization". Amazingly stupid, these stoners.

DonkeyHotay
DonkeyHotay topcommenter

@WeGotsItGood <== does it hurt to be so ignorant?



Colorado ain't Oklahoma, never was, never will be.


Possession of up to 2 (two) ounces without a med card was ALREADY "decriminalized" in Colorado, for EVERYONE, prior to that worthless turd A64.


A64 only allows 1 (one) pathetic ounce.


A64 explicitly excludes ALL adults under 21 from ANY legal access to rec. pot, maintaining all existing CRIMINAL penalties.


A64 explicitly declares that Private sales between consenting adults shall remain ILLEGAL -- a FELONY for even a single gram.


A64 explicitly declares that Driving under the INFLUENCE of marijuana shall remain ILLEGAL ... without setting any reasonable or objective standard.


A64 did NOT repeal a single FELONY marijuana statute from Colorado law.


A64 did NOT repeal a single CRIMINAL misdemeanor marijuana statute from Colorado law.


A64 = a CONTINUATION of CRIMINAL PROHIBITION against Marijuana, written and promoted by liars and big $$ dispensary cartel shysters, and supported by ignorant fools, idiots and tools like you.


 *** Get REGULATED, Bitch! ***

WeGotsItGood
WeGotsItGood

@FreeTheWeed  In Oklahoma it is a 'felony' to possess a bag of weed. In Denver, you can walk into a store and buy one. Enough said.

FreeTheWeed
FreeTheWeed

The only people outsmarted were fools like you. It wasn't a felony to have a "bag of weed" prior to A64. It wasn't a misdemeanor. It wasn't even a jailable petty offense.

You punked yourselves.

HistoryRepeats
HistoryRepeats

@FreeTheWeed  They out-smarted the opposition. You do realize you can walk into a  store now and buy a sack of weed right? How is this a failure as opposed to other states that still consider this a  felony?

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