A Senate committee has rejected a proposed reform to legalise cannabis in Australia, despite the argument it would ease the burden on police and bring in $300 million extra in state revenue a year.
Liberal Democrats senator David Leyonhjelm has proposed federal laws to legalise cannabis for recreational, medicinal, industrial and other purposes. Figures from the National Drug Strategy show one in 10 Australians over the age of 14 used it in 2016 and 35 per cent of Australians had indulged in their lifetime.
However, the he committee said that it “agrees with many of the submitters that argued this bill is flawed and premature, and considers that the known risks of illegal cannabis use greatly outweigh the potential benefits of legalisation as contained in the bill”.
Leyonhjelm responded by reiterating that the crime-based approach was futile and it was time for Australia to follow the lead of other countries such as Spain, Portugal, Turkey and India.
Dianne Feinstein, the senior Democratic senator from California who formerly opposed the legalisation of cannabis, has signed on as a sponsor of the STATES Act, a federal marijuana legalisation bill now pending in the US Senate. The Strengthening the Tenth Amendment Through Entrusting States, or STATES Act, if passed, would amend the Controlled Substances Act so that it is no longer applicable to statutes “relating to the manufacture, production, possession, distribution, dispensation, administration, or delivery of” cannabis.
“Federal law enforcement agents should not arrest Californians who are adhering to California law,” said Feinstein. “My state has legalized marijuana for personal use, and as California continues to implement this law, we need to ensure we have strong safety rules to prevent impaired driving and youth access, similar to other public health issues like alcohol.”
Grease actress Olivia Newton-John has revealed she is taking cannabis oil to aid sleep and reduce pain after suffering a third relapse in her battle against breast cancer. Her oil comes from marijuana plants grown by her husband John Easterling in California, where recreational use of cannabis is legal.
US-based company Hippo Premium Packaging has introduced a new child-resistant packaging line for the cannabis industry. Known as Duallok, the “uniquely designed box” provides a “top-of-the-line folding carton”.
Developed by packaging design agency Burgopak, the Duallok package features a tray and sleeve that locks and provides a barrier to restrict entry for children, but can be easily opened by adults. It can be used for a range of products such as vape cartridges, disposable pens, pre-rolls, syringes, edibles, and more.