Greens leader Richard Di Natale's backs cannabis decriminalisation

Greens leader Richard Di Natale's backs cannabis decriminalisation

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

In Australia, the U.S., and all over the world, the war on drugs has caused more than its fair share of harm, and it seems that finally, things are changing.

"For example, safety-sensitive industries that have higher prevalences of self-reported marijuana use could consider evaluating their current drug testing programs, drug panels used for pre-employment screening, and testing frequencies, and develop policies regarding tolerance of drug use", the authors wrote. "The risk of graduating to ice or to heroin from extended marijuana use is real and documented", Hunt told reporters. "We do not believe it is safe, responsible or something which should be allowed".

Asked why the government wouldn't want the tax revenue, Mr Hunt said it didn't want to put the mental health of Australians at risk. It's definitely a point he needs to rebuke: in Colorado, considered one of the most successful models of marijuana legalisation, the state government pulled in almost $250 million in tax in 2017 alone from legalised marijuana sales.

A national agency would be established to issue licences, monitor and enforce conditions and oversee regulations.

It would also act as the single wholesaler for cannabis - purchasing cannabis from producers and selling it in plain packaging to retail stores.

Individuals would be permitted six plants for their own personal use.


The party has also called for the Misuse of Drugs act to be amended, individuals to be permitted to grow up to two cannabis plants in their home for personal use, and for access to cannabis-based medicines that can be used under a supervised system similar to that now in Germany.

"In a poll past year, 55% of Australians said they believe cannabis should be taxed and regulated like alcohol or tobacco".

"I call on political parties of all stripes to join the Greens in committing to just legalise it", he said.

In an interview with The Daily Telegraph, Mr Hunt said the Greens' cannabis policy would mean it was "open slather for a highly unsafe and addictive drug" which he said was also a "gateway to even more risky drugs".

The draft legislation, which Demeulenaere pointed out could still possibly change, restricts recreational marijuana use to your home.

A costing by the Parliamentary Budget Office for independent senator David Leyonhjelm, who wants marijuana legalised, found in 2016 that legalising cannabis would generate about $300 million a year in GST revenue, as well as save about $100 million a year in reduced Australian Federal Police and Australian Border Force costs.

Crossbench senator Derryn Hinch also backed the Greens' push, saying "you'd ban alcohol and cigarettes" too if the argument was that it's bad for you.

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