Cannabis oil has saved another life. Now, parents of a young medical marijuana patient are fighting to change laws in their city. One Costa Mesa family has introduced Measure X, which seeks to allow cannabis extract cultivation in their hometown. Prior to the measure, extract manufacturing was illegal and cannabis businesses faced raids. Measure X seeks to change the legal status and save lives. Here’s how one family is fighting to save their daughter.
Five years to live
At 12-years-old, Gianna Dragotto has up to 200 drop seizures per hour. Each seizure lasts anywhere between 12 and 15 seconds.
Gianna has Lennox-Gastaut Syndrome, a rare form of epilepsy that can be life-threatening. Unfortunately, Gianna also has a metabolic disorder that causes both mental and physical disabilities.
Gianna’s troubles began when she was a mere three months old. Doctors estimated that Gianna wouldn’t live to see her fifth birthday. Gianna’s mother, Natalie Dragotto recalls her doctor’s response to reporters from the OC register:
The doctor told me, ‘You need to focus on having more children and not focus so much on making Gianna better.’ – Dragotto
Yet, Gianna persevered. Modern pharmaceutical treatments kept her alive, but eventually the Dragotto’s exhausted all of their options. By the time she was 10, her condition continued to worsen. Something had to give.
Cannabis oil to the rescue
In 2014, the Dragotto’s decided to try cannabis oil. Much to everyone’s amazement, cannabis treatment reduced their daughter’s seizures from a couple hundred per hour down to about 20. Gianna began to say simple words, including “mama”.
Cannabis oil has truly been a lifesaver for the Dragotto family. Now, they hope to transform the lives of others by producing medical extracts in their hometown, Costa Mesa, California.
The Dragotto’s have pioneered one of three cannabis measures on the Costa Mesa ballot. Measure X seeks to allow a cannabis production, manufacturing, and wholesale distribution facility in a northern, industrial part of the city. As of right now, Costa Mesa voters appear to favor the measure.
Measure X: Production only, no dispensaries
Robert Taft, the owner of 420 Central, a medical dispensary which supplies Gianna with cannabis oil, thinks that Measure X will improve cannabis safety. He explains,
I don’t know how [the cannabis oil] made and I own the store. These products are made by people in the business that have a great reputation and following, but can I tell you what their lab looks like or how clean or secure it is? No. Measure X solves all that.
Prior to the bill, Taft could only access the oils by traveling out of Orange County. Measure X would allow nearby cannabis access points to keep safer, local products in stock for patients like Gianna.
However, the measure would not allow actual dispensaries to open up in Costa Mesa. Rather, patients would still need to travel to Santa Ana to access the oil.
However, research and testing would be permitted. Cannabis businesses would also face a 6% tax, which would provide some extra funds to the city.