State Rep. Thomas Albert, of Lowell, was recently presented with the 2018 Legislator of the Year Award among Michigan state representatives by the Michigan Council for Maternal & Child Health.
Albert’s work on House Bill 5222 was pivotal in his work to receive the honor. The proposal requires medical marijuana sold by provisioning centers to include a warning for pregnant and breastfeeding women – similar to what is found on alcohol or tobacco products – helping keep Michigan’s current and soon-to-be residents safe.
“As the legal landscape surrounding medical and recreational marijuana use changes in Michigan, Rep. Albert recognized the need for protections for pregnant women and children,” said Amy Zaagman, who serves as the council’s executive director. “We are so grateful for his leadership and openness to collaboration on warning labels for medical marijuana packaging, and adding poison control notices to dispensaries. We need thoughtful maternal and child health advocates like Rep. Albert in the legislature.”
The legislation was overwhelmingly approved in bipartisan fashion in a House vote in December 2017 and currently is under consideration in the Senate.
“I feel honored and humbled to receive this recognition and I hope we can see this bill through into law,” Albert said. “Marijuana, alcohol and tobacco use can lead to low birth weight and certain developmental disabilities in newborns. We should label marijuana as we do the others to remind pregnant mothers of the very real risks while helping to ensure the protection of Michigan’s children.”
Albert was recently elected to a second term in the Michigan House, beginning in January. He serves residents in portions of Kent and Ionia counties within the 86th House District.
PHOTO INFORMATION: State Rep. Thomas Albert, of Lowell, is joined by Michigan Council for Maternal & Child Health executive director Amy Zaagman (left) and Board of Directors president Anna Ronke while accepting the organization’s House Legislator of the Year Award for 2018.