Education was the main goal of the forum, hosted by the group Minorities for Medical Marijuana.
“African American communities, Hispanic communities ... we’ve paid the price for this industry,” says board chair Erik Range.
“We need minorities to understand this is a medicine and it does have medical benefits, we need professionals to understand this is the new dot com era.”
State legislators Bobby Powell and Al Jacquet sat on the panel.
Organizers say it’s all about taking the conversation out of Tallahassee and moving it forward.
“We have to have these conversations at the local level, in the communities, and not at the higher level,” Range says.
Army veteran Terry Hansen drove from Orlando to be a part of the conversation.
She told me she wanted to let lawmakers know where their priorities should be.
“The focus should be on the patient, not the system,” she says. “Help us. Please, help us," said Hansen.
Fritz Pamphile, owner of a medical marijuana patient consulting firm, said he also wants to be apart of the conversation. Some business experts predict the medical marijuana business will boom in Florida.
Pamphile sees a bright future.
“I probably have a couple of dispensaries going on,” said Pamphile. I’ll probably work with pharmaceutical companies and work on some product.”
There are emerging perspectives in a new frontier here in Florida.