“Legalising recreational cannabis use would deprive organised crime, whether Middle Eastern crime gangs, Asian triads, bikie gangs or relatives of Darth Vader, of a major source of income, and relieve police of the cost of finding and destroying illicit crops. Of the $1.5 billion spent annually on drug law enforcement, 70% is attributable to cannabis. That’s an expense we do not need.”
CANBERRA — Australia has passed a medical marijuana bill to allow the cultivation of the drug, but the Greens say medical cannabis remains an illegal substance.
Health Minister Sussan Ley announced on Wednesday afternoon that amendments to the Narcotic Drugs Act — passed through the House of Representatives on Tuesday — had also successfully passed through the Senate.
The bill would allow access to medicinal cannabis products for people suffering from serious illness, by legislating the growing of cannabis for medical and scientific purposes. Products such as cannabis oil are used in the treatment of nausea during chemotherapy, chronic pain, multiple sclerosis, epilepsy and other neurological conditions.
“This is an historic day for Australia and the many advocates who have fought long and hard to challenge the stigma around medical cannabis products so genuine patients are no longer treated as criminals,” Ley said in a statement.
“This is the missing piece in a patient’s treatment journey and will now see seamless access to locally-produced cannabis products from farm to pharmacy.”
“Under this scheme, a patient with a valid prescription can possess and use a medicinal cannabis product manufactured from cannabis plants legally cultivated in Australia”.