Walk from Bury St Edmunds to Clare will raise profile of campaigners' fight to get cannabis based treatment on the NHS
Campaigners for better access to medicinal cannabis will be walking 20-miles from Bury St Edmunds to Clare this Sunday to raise awareness of the issue.
The annual walk is named in honour of Indie-Rose Clarry, six, from Clare, whose family has battled for years to get access medicinal cannabis for her on the NHS.
Indie has Dravet Syndrome, a rare form of severe epilepsy and for the last three years her family has given her medicinal cannabis, to enormous benefit to her health.
In the covid-19 lockdown her situation has been made even worse. Her family travel to Holland to access her medicine, but haven’t been able to, potentially putting her life at risk.
Campaigners feel that millions of people could benefit from access to medicinal cannabis, not just in helping severe epilepsy, but for a range of health conditions such as cancer, anxiety, MS, eating disorders, autism, Alzheimer’s, nausea and pain management.
Tannine Montgomery, Indie-Rose’s mum said: "There is still a massive stigma around using cannabis as a medication in the UK. It is not easy to obtain, and even with prescriptions we are struggling to obtain this medicine that our loved ones need."
The walkers hope to send strong message to end this terrible situation by putting pressure on the NHS, Primary Care Trusts and the Heath Secretary and by raising awareness in the public.
Co-organiser Giles Bryant said: "We are walking on Suffolk Day, on the summer solstice and it is Father’s Day too.
"My message to all fathers is this – imagine your child was sick and in danger of dying from a seizure at any time.
"Imagine you’d found a natural medicine that reduced these seizures up to 90 per cent and had enabled your child to walk, attend school, sleep and play.
"Imagine you had a UK prescription for this medicine from a medical doctor. Now imagine the NHS would not allow you get this medicine to help your child. How would you feel?
"As a father myself, I call on all people to show solidarity with Indie’s family, and millions of people who could benefit from this natural medicine."
If you would like to do the walk, the walkers meet at 10am in Bury Abbey, the site of the old choir.
They will be observing the government covid-19 guidelines (whatever they are at the time) to make sure everyone walking is safe. With this in mind, walkers do so at their own risk, and they need to be fit and carry any water/food/first aid they'll require.
They aim to be back in Clare around 5pm.
Information can be obtained from Giles email@example.com or from Tannine Montgomery on Facebook.
More by this authorSteve Barton
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