The whole world is moving towards decriminalisation of cannabis, the latest to start the move is the United Kingdom:
Cannabis should be legalised to bring Britain up to speed with a growing number of Western countries and end the “embarrassment” of domestic drugs policy, a cross party group of MPs have said.
Former deputy prime minster Nick Clegg and former health minister Norman Lamb joined Labour and Tory figures to back a new report which claimed legalisation could net the Treasury more than £1 billion a year in tax revenue.
The Adam Smith Institute and Volteface study argued that the UK should follow the lead of the United States, where four further states legalised marijuana in this month’s elections.
It came as Germany gets ready to legalise cannabis for medical purposes and Canada prepares for all-out decriminalisation.
The Netherlands effectively decriminalised cannabis decades ago while Portugal legalised it in 2001.
The report argued that Britain’s “dark ages” drugs policy has failed to stop people drugs being manufactured and used, and to stop associated crime, corruption and killing.
It called for “root and branch” reform to legalise and regulate cannabis to ensure it meets acceptable standards, and to remove the market for criminal gangs.
A legal cannabis market could be worth £6.8 billion to the economy annually, potentially netting between £750 million and £1.05 billion in tax revenues and reduced criminal justice costs.
The number of offenders in prison for cannabis-related offences in England and Wales would also likely drop from the current 1,363, who cost taxpayers £50 million a year, the report said.
Mr Clegg said: “British politicians need to open their eyes to what is happening in the rest of the world.
“Cannabis prohibition is being swept away on a tide of popular opinion and replaced with responsible legal regulation.
“Now is the time for ministers to start writing the rules for this legal market, including age limits and health warnings, so that we can finally take back control from the criminal gangs.”
The so-called ‘War on Drugs’ is a failure. drug use hasn’t diminished at all. In fact, the only places to reduce drug harm are those countries like Portugal who have decriminalised drug use and focused on medical and mental health solutions.
It is time that our own politicians grew up instead of ignoring the issue.
Eventually, within 5 years I’d say, the government is going to have to address it as the rest of the world decriminalises.
– The Telegraph