Fed govt rejects call to legalise cannabis

17 April, 2018, 13:33 | Author: Wade Massey
  • Frequent cannabis use by young people linked to small reductions in cognitive function

The lifting of a veil over taboos and criminality that covered the reality that we already knew was there and that made criminals out of decent people and sufferers out of medical patients.

In a significant escalation of Greens drug policy, Federal leader Richard Di Natale wants Australia to follow the lead of Spain, Uruguay and nine US States and decriminalise marijuana use for all adults.

Senator Di Natale said nearly seven million Australians had tried or used cannabis, with consumption and drug possession-related arrests both on the rise.

"Governments around the world are realising that prohibition of cannabis causes more harm than it prevents", Senator Di Natale said on Monday.

Sales to those under the age of 18 would be banned under the policy, which calls for a new Government agency to be set up and given a monopoly over the wholesale supply of marijuana to shops.

The party's announcement of this policy coincided with activist, Vera Twomey receiving of a 2018 People of the Year award for her national campaign to legalise medicinal cannabis.

People would be able to legally smoke dope, grow six plants of marijuana in their backyard and buy the drug at stores under a controversial Australian Greens policy. The Dutch model, which regulated cultivation, is safer than what we have now.

"Cannabis accounts for most illicit drug arrests across Australia and each year cannabis consumption and arrests are growing", he said.

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The party is confident that now is the right time for change on cannabis in Ireland.

Former Australian Federal Police commissioner Mick Palmer backed the Greens' policy, slamming the so-called "war on drugs" as an abysmal failure.

He said a poll past year showed 55 per cent of Australians believed cannabis should be taxed and regulated like alcohol or tobacco.

The Australian Drug Law Reform Foundation's Alex Wodak said banning cannabis had distracted police from following up more serious crimes and helped make some criminals rich.

He expects the plan to raise hundreds of millions of dollars in revenue, helping fund treatment, education and other harm-reduction programs.

Tasmania allows medical cannabis in limited circumstances where conventional treatment has been unsuccessful, as does Western Australia, South Australia, the NT and the ACT.

In January, weed was made recreationally legal in a number of USA states including Alaska, California, Colorado, Maine, Massachusetts, Nevada, Oregon and Washington DC.

Greens leader Dr Richard Di Natale said the Greens saw drug use as a health issue, not a criminal issue.

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