Users have to break law
The ACT government has rejected a push to create an effective amnesty
for medicinal cannabis users by directing police not to charge them
with drug offences.
Canberrans who rely on medicinal cannabis to treat serious illness or
chronic pain are currently forced to break the law to seek relief and
a number, including campaigner Laura Bryant, have spoken publicly of
their constant fear of arrest.
Moves to establish legal medicinal cannabis cultivation are continuing
federally, with changes to the Narcotics Drugs Act passed in February,
and the Therapeutic Goods Administration and Department of Health
advancing plans to lower barriers preventing access.
[continues 397 words]
The guards' union has warned it will take the government to the
industrial relations tribunal if it tries to push ahead with the
needle exchange program at Canberra's jail without the consent of
The government has been consulting with a large number of interest
groups over its plans to introduce a one-for-one needle exchange
model to swap a single clean needle for a dirty needle in the
Alexander Maconochie Centre.
The plan, designed to combat blood-borne disease, has sparked strong
criticism from guards, who warn it is unworkable, will feed a
black-market trade of needles and put correctional officers in danger.
[continues 312 words]
The quality of the drug ecstasy
in Australia is deteriorating rapidly, creating a potentially
lucrative market for criminal syndicates supplying pure forms of the
drug, according to a report issued yesterday by the Australian Crime
The report, which focuses on organised crime in Australia, quantified
the social cost of underworld activity at $15billion per year, and
warned Mexican drug cartels were gaining a foothold in Australia,
particularly in cocaine importation.
The commission described Australia as an irresistibly lucrative market
for drug traffickers, and said the illicit drug trade remained the
biggest source of income for organised crime syndicates.
[continues 368 words]