Tags: australia | medical | marijuana | legalized

Australia Medical Marijuana: Pot Now Legal Down Under

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By    |   Thursday, 25 Feb 2016 11:54 AM

Lawmakers in Australia legalized medical marijuana Wednesday, passing revisions to the Narcotic Drugs Act so a national body can be created to issue licenses to weed growers and regulate local crops.

Medical marijuana advocates had argued that patients were forced to purchase the drug on the black market because pot was illegal to grow and import for medical purposes in Australia, The Sydney Morning Herald reported.

"This is an historic day for Australia and the many advocates who have fought long and hard to challenge the stigma around medicinal cannabis products so genuine patients are no longer treated as criminals," Sussan Ley, Australia's minster of health, said in a statement.

"This is the missing piece in a patient's treatment journey and will now see seamless access to locally-produced medicinal cannabis products from farm to pharmacy. I would particularly like to acknowledge the many patient advocates who have played a tremendous and tireless role in bringing this important issue to the attention of the nation," Ley continued.

She stressed in her statement that Wednesday's action did not decriminalize marijuana for recreational use or growing, and she said that laws against recreational used will be enforced. An independent advisory committee will be established to oversee the next stage of the medical marijuana rollout.

"Today's outcome is a demonstration of this Parliament's commitment to not only ensure we get access to a safe, legal and reliable supply of medicinal cannabis products for Australian patients, but we also get it right," Ley added in her statement.

CNN reported that Parliament's passage came a year after Daniel Haslam died at 25 from terminal bowel cancer and his mother, Lucy Haslam, petitioned the Australian government to make medical marijuana legal.

Daniel Haslam used medical marijuana to ease the pain and nausea before he died, leading his mom to start the advocacy group United in Compassion to call for reforming the country's drug laws.

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Lawmakers in Australia legalized medical marijuana Wednesday, passing revisions to the Narcotic Drugs Act so a national body can be created to issue licenses to weed growers and regulate local crops.
australia, medical, marijuana, legalized
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2016-54-25
Thursday, 25 Feb 2016 11:54 AM
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