Australia Legalizes Cannabis, But Here’s The Catch

Australia Legalizes Cannabis, But Here’s The Catch
Lemon Kush Medical Marijuana Mark / Flickr CC BY 2.0

The Australian Parliament has finally passed another landmark legislation, which legalizes the use of cannabis in the country.


But here’s the catch: the amending law, which was passed Wednesday, will permit only the use of medicinal marijuana. The new law, which amends the decades-old Narcotics Drug Act of Australia was a brainchild of a year-long battle initiated by a grieving mother who lost a child to a bowel cancer last year.

Exactly a year ago, Lucy Haslam, lost his 25-year-old son, Daniel, to an end-stage of bowel cancer, the Metro reported. Before his death, Daniel had been using medical marijuana to lessen the tingling pain caused by his condition. After Daniel’s death, Lucy launched an advocacy campaign urging the legislative branch to legalize medical marijuana in the country.

While mourning the death of his son, Lucy organized the United Compassion, which is an Australia-based advocacy group, which primarily aimed to push for the legalization of medical marijuana in Australia.

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Sussan Ley of the Australian Ministry of Healthy lauded the Parliament’s decision to finally legalize medical marijuana across Australia. This is also an important event in the country’s history as patients who are in pain due to various medical conditions will no longer be branded as ‘criminals’.

“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 criminal,” Ley was quoted as saying by the Metro.

In a separate report from the CNN, Senator Richard Di Natale, who is one of the Australian lawmakers who have pushed for the legalization of medical marijuana in the country, likewise said the passing of the law is a one big step in making medical marijuana more accessible to those who really need it. He also expressed his appreciation to Lucy’s family for painstakingly advocating the legalization of medical cannabis in the country.