A petition sponsored by Member for Buderim Steve Dickson (LNP) concerning medical cannabis has attracted more than 5,500 signatures so far.
The petition calls for allowing Australian made whole plant cannabis therapies be made available to anyone who could benefit their use. It also requests an immediate amnesty to all cannabis therapy users, their carers and cannabis therapists; in order to facilitate discussion and research without those parties fearing prosecution.
While Australia is a signatory to the United Nations’ Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs and cannabis is included in Schedule IV of that Convention; each country is permitted under the agreement to adopt the use of cannabis for medical and scientific purposes. The Single Convention places the same restrictions on cannabis cultivation that it does on opium cultivation.
In this regard, the petition states the Queensland Government is failing to uphold human rights and is discriminatory. It also accuses the government of favouring overseas pharmaceutical companies; which is increasing the cost of the PBS scheme and of supporting the black market cannabis market.
The document also states the Government’s stance represents a failure to facilitate research, to recognise the entourage effect of cannabis medicine and recognition of the human endocannabinoid system.
Mr. Dickson says while he understands the issue of medicinal cannabis is highly controversial, believes the “time is ripe” to seriously investigate its use.
“Anything that can bring relief to those suffering from medical conditions should be considered,” he said.
The principal petitioner is Bec Bridson, who began researching medical marijuana after a friend was again diagnosed with breast cancer last year and who dreading another program of chemotherapy.
The petition can be viewed here. The closing date for the petition is November 30, 2015.
Late last month Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk announced the state’s first medical cannabis program for patients with multiple sclerosis. The drug Sativex will be used in the trial, which is manufactured by the UK’s GW Pharmaceuticals. Sativex is a cannabinoid medicine used primarily for the treatment of spasticity due to multiple sclerosis.