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Australia: Parliament Approves Measure To Authorize Medical Marijuana Production

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australia marijuanaBy Paul Armentano, NORML Deputy Director

Members of Australia’s House and Senate approved legislation this week to amend federal law to permit for the licensed production and distribution of cannabis to qualified patients.

The measure amends the Narcotic Drugs Act of 1967 to allow “for the cultivation and production of cannabis and cannabis resin for medicinal and scientific purposes,” and to authorize “a state or territory government agency to undertake [in the]cultivation and production of cannabis and [in the]manufacture of medicinal cannabis products.”

The move by Parliament follows recent efforts by several Australian territories to provide patients participating in clinical trials with access to the plant.

“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,” Minister for Health Sussan 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 medicinal cannabis products from farm to pharmacy.”

Government officials will still need to develop and approve regulations for the new program before any production licenses can be issued.

Canada, Israel, and the Netherlands are among the handful of nations that presently provide federal licenses to private growers to supply medical marijuana to qualified patients. Colombia, Jamaica, and Puerto Rico are also expected to begin licensing medical marijuana manufacturing in the near future.

In 2013, Uruguay officials approved legislation authorizing the retail production and sale of cannabis to those age 18 and older. Consumers in that country are anticipated to be able to begin purchasing cannabis at state-licensed pharmacies by mid-2016.

Source: NORML - make a donation

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  • Closet Warrior

    Not a district or just a state but the whole country and did you notice nowhere did you see the word dispensary but pharmacy instead. They are gonna work this in their regular medical programs like medicare to help their patients get affordable meds to all while we live on oxys and adderal to cope! We’re decades behind Israel in research and dispensement , lifetimes away from full legalization like Uruguay. Just maybe Bernie Sanders isn’t such a dreamer, we need to stand United against government tyranny on our right to our personal freedom!!!

  • Jerry Cook

    Having big pharma in control will not help. They do not want to cure but to keep profits up with pills & sprays for partial effect & continued use. They do not go for strain or whole plant..thats too difficult for their work process & too expensive. Parts are easier, especially synthetics. They will not go with vaping or smoking, or even oils or food use, so far. As a food, you can find it in some quiet whole food shops, but not anywhere else, and even that is under a lot of pressure from police.
    Dispensaries use the whole natural plant with full entourage/synergy effects in place, & better results. Until dispensaries are in place with full use & effect, we won’t have great results.
    Also, the new law is very complex & open to interpretation by the new Fed god “Secretary”, which may well end up with little change in fact, like the 1937 Tax Stamp Act there where no stamps were issued . Also, states have a long way to go to even catch up to this bitter Fed change for big pharma.
    We still have a long way to go here, thanks..not to mention the police random stop drivers for any use, with severe penalties..Not Impairment! They post “you will not escape” on electronic road signs..no probable cause, no warrant..full SS Nazis. They do not test for most drugs at all, alcohol the only one for impairment, by amount, not by impairment test either.
    Cannabis is an easy bust as it stays in the body in part for weeks, for good use, unlike all else thats toxic which the body gets rid of asap.
    Police love it for biz, while screwing citizens.
    We hope Bernie & his bill there can change things for everyone, as Trudeau has started in Canada..then here in Oz we will have a better chance too.
    This new law here, so far, is a bad joke. No one is approved for anything yet..with big pharma in the drivers seat & states yet to do anything. We are a long way out of any real improvement, in fact.