Embassy Headlines, Issue 36

The NSW Inquiry into the use of Cannabis for medical purposes has received a healthy bunch of submissions. You can read the committee selected submissions on their website.

The Embassy Headlines are a selection of recent articles from news services and media sources primarily concerning Cannabis issues, the consequences of prohibition and the challenges for law reform.

Here are the selected headlines for this week.

Embassy Headlines 36

Submissions to the NSW Inquiry into the use of Cannabis for medical purposes.

The submissions listed have been made public by resolution of the Committee. This material is subject to parliamentary privilege which may restrict the way the submissions can be used. If further information is required on the use which can be made of these submissions the advice of the Clerk of the Parliaments should be sought.

Alcohol in Australia

It’s the most widely available, used and socially accepted drug in Australia. And it may be the most harmful. Join The Conversation for a week-long series that will examine the reasons for and the consequences of our love of alcohol. 

Customs staff told to dob in mates who smoke pot

Australian Customs wants its staff to dob in colleagues who are seen smoking marijuana at parties outside work, leaked internal documents reveal.

Cannabis growers risk ‘supply’ charges

People who grow cannabis for personal use could be risking criminal charges by inadvertently cultivating too much.

It’s time for Drug Law Reform in Australia!

Drug Law Reform Australia is Australia’s newest political force. We are not pro-drugs though we support decriminalisation, regulation and harm minimisation of currently illegal drugs. We are calling for the end of the so called “war on drugs”. As a political movement, we seek representation in Parliament. We believe the two major parties are incapable of solving this national problem. Their tough on crime rhetoric, trivializes the problem.

USA: Legalised pot takes on state of the union

The Sydney Morning Herald’s US correspondent Nick O’Malley travels to Washington state to check out the new drug laws, and is left dazed by what he finds.

USA: Doors swing open for advocates of marijuana legalization on Capitol Hill

Advocates for the legalization of marijuana plan to step up their political giving and lobbying efforts now that members of Congress are taking an interest in changing federal drug laws. The lobbyists say lawmakers who wouldn’t give them the time of day are suddenly interested in meeting with them and introducing legislation following the approval of ballot initiatives in Colorado and Washington that legalized recreational use of the drug.

USA: Unions Have High Hopes for Weed Workers

The United Food and Commercial Workers [UFCW] has been unionizing marijuana workers since 2010.

How High Is Too High to Drive?

Road tests and driving simulator studies have found that the more weed drivers inhale, the worse they do at essentials such as staying in their lanes, responding to sudden hazards (like a dog running into the street), and multitasking—for example, reading street signs on a twisty road while avoiding oncoming traffic.

UK: Legalising drugs would be the perfect Tory policy

It would save money, aid global security and be tough on crime. What could appeal to Conservatives more?

Decriminalise heroin and cocaine says Belfast drugs worker

One of Northern Ireland’s most senior drugs workers has said that class A drugs like heroin should be decriminalised, regulated and made available on prescription. Michael Foley is the head of the Belfast Trust’s Drug Outreach Team and has two decades of experience working with drug addicts. “I think the impact of decriminalising, of regulating, of taking this activity out of the hands of organised crime, is the way to improve our society right now,” he said.

Canada: Battle over medical marijuana

More than a decade ago, after several court rulings, the federal government was forced to create regulations allowing people with legitimate needs to possess or grow cannabis for personal medical use without facing criminal charges. Yet it seems Canadians will have to wait longer for a truly workable system that ensures access. Unfortunately, in a ruling issued Feb. 1, the Ontario Court of Appeal rejected the latest constitutional challenge to the current marijuana medical access regulations (MMAR).

 International Centre on Human Rights and Drug Policy

Established in 2009, the International Centre on Human Rights and Drug Policy is dedicated to developing and promoting innovative and high quality legal and human rights research and teaching on issues related to drug laws, policy and enforcement.

I’m Waiting for my UPS Man

There are two websites where you can add a gram of heroin to your shopping cart as if you were buying asparagus on Fresh Direct. One belongs to Sigma-Aldrich, the St. Louis chemical company that synthesizes pure opioids for use in laboratory studies. For this you need to be a federally accredited laboratory. The other is Silk Road, the anonymous marketplace where drugs are priced in untraceable Bitcoin currency. For this you just need an internet connection.


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