- Medical Cannabis
The week commencing the 30th of November is marked as a landmark victory for Cannabis activists across the world. 2 major votes in favor and a country fully legalising the use of marijuana.
UN votes to remove cannabis from List of Hard Drugs
Starting off with the United Nations, on the 2nd of December, the UN Commission on Narcotic Drugs(CND) took a number of decisions, leading to changes in the way cannabis is internationally regulated. The historic vote was held in Vienna but the implications of the decision will be heard across the globe. With a small majority in favor 27 for, 25 against and one abstention the CND’s 53 Member States voted to remove cannabis from the strictest control schedules. The status was changed after 59 years and will mark a new dawn for the use of the plant as a medicinal remedy.
It is important to note that the CND was voting only on cannabis and its derivatives that are used for medicinal purposes. Recreational marijuana, hemp and its derivatives, as well as CBD added to food, topicals and supplements were not subject to CND’s vote.
Britain’s delegate said that the reclassification was “in line with the scientific evidence of its therapeutic benefits” but that the country still strongly supported international controls for cannabis, adding that marijuana presented “serious public health risks.”
The United States voted to remove cannabis from Schedule IV of the Single Convention while retaining them in Schedule I, saying it is “consistent with the science demonstrating that while a safe and effective cannabis-derived therapeutic has been developed, cannabis itself continues to pose significant risks to public health and should continue to be controlled under the international drug control conventions”.
The U.S. delegate said they rejected the CBD proposal “on legal and procedural grounds. Cannabidiol has not demonstrated abuse potential, and it is not our position that cannabidiol should be or is under the control of the international drug conventions,” the delegate said.
“…We believe the member states are capable of determining for themselves what should be considered a ‘pure’ cannabidiol preparation for domestic enforcement purposes based on analytical capacity, abuse liability, and prioritization of prosecutorial resources.”
U.S. House APPROVES MORE Act
On December 4th the House of Representatives approved decriminazing marijuana at the federal level in the first time Congress has acted on the matter. Branded as the Marijuana Opportunity Reinvestment and Expungement Act, or MORE Act, the bill removes cannabis from the list of federally controlled substances and facilitates canceling low-level federal convictions and arrests related to marijuana. By a vote of 228-164 the bill was passed and will face a vote in the Senate where it is not expected to pass the Republican-controled Senate. However, this is a landmark decision on the road of the decriminalizing cannabis, a decision long overdue. It is a reflection of the cultural shift that is happening in the U.S. and across the world.
Israel announces plan to legalize recreational cannabis
Israeli video footage posted on various social networking websites making rounds online recently shows an aerial drone dropping marijuana bundles into a field in Tel Aviv. The clip shows a drone drop several bundles of what seems to be marijuana, this footage was filmed in a main street in Tel Aviv.
Israel’s Minister of Justice is pushing for cannabis to be legalized in Israel. It will take time and money to enact this policy. However, if this is enacted it would create a domino effect, as other nations that are also involved in the drug war will look at implementing a similar policy.
The movement has the support of more than a third of Israel’s population and is gaining support from more professionals as well as the general public. The country is also one of the major exporters of cannabis in the world.
It is time to make progress and legalize cannabis in IsraelAvi Nissenkorn – Israel Justice Minister
The new law will enable people above the age of 21 to legally buy and consume cannabis from dispensaries. The dispensaries cannot produce THC cannabis edibles(THC gummies) and public smoking will also be discouraged.
Legalising cannabis makes big financial sense for countries for many reasons:
- Spending money policing the black market that could be put back in the general economy
- Job growth and investment opportunities
- Lost funds from taxation
- Increased productivity for people that have reduced health symptoms
The UK is in dire need of new opportunities having had a huge impact from the Covid-19 pandemic and the Brexit vote. Now is the time for acting in legalising cannabis to ensure the country can have a financial stimulus and keep up with the growing trends across the world.