Inquiry into cannabis: Will it lead to legalisation?

Victoria’s first inquiry into cannabis will soon be underway, after the Legislative Council voted 27 to 11 in favour of the inquiry yesterday. The inquiry will examine the state’s eight billion dollar illegal cannabis industry, assessing the health and social impacts of marijuana use and considering measures for harm reduction. Fiona Patten, leader of the Reason Party and strong supporter for marijuana legalisation, was behind the motion which spurred the inquiry. She told 3AW’s Neil Mitchell the inquiry is not just about whether or not the drug should be legalised. “I think there is a much more complex and complicated conversation that we should have before we start looking at what the solu

'Mother flower' versus terminal cancer diagnosis. Can cannabis beat cancer?

Tamworth's Peter O'Rourke using medicinal cannabis against terminal lung cancer Mother flower: Peter O'Rourke defied the odds with the help of medicinal cannabis, or as he calls it 'the mother flower'. Photo: Peter Hardin Peter O'Rourke claims the "mother flower", or medicinal cannabis saved his life, four years after being diagnosed with stage 4 terminal lung cancer, and given just one month to live. Mr O'Rourke's story features in the Tamworth based documentary High as Mike, which has its local premier at the Capitol Theatre on Thursday night. In December 2015 Mr O'Rourke got the startling news that his "flu that wouldn't go away" was actually terminal cancer, and that he needed to "get hi

AFL great urges luckless Saint to seek clarity on medicinal cannabis

AFL 2019: Garry Lyon urges Paddy McCartin to seek clarity from AFL about alternative concussion treatments Paddy McCartin’s young AFL career has been hampered by constant concussion setbacks. Picture: Alex CoppelSource: News Corp Australia Melbourne great Garry Lyon has urged sidelined Saint Paddy McCartin to approach the AFL about the possibility of exploring alternative concussion treatments to deal with his debilitating issues. McCartin on the weekend opened up on his issues during a confronting and raw interview on Triple M, saying the symptoms had led to him to believe he’d “lost his identity as a person”. There’s no timeframe on when the St Kilda forward will be available to return to

Medicinal cannabis scheme in Canberra failing to find enough doctors willing to prescribe drug

Photo: Kerrie-Ann Trembath Forster says cannabis alleviates some of her suffering. (ABC News) Kerrie-Ann Trembath Forster has lived with agonising chronic pain for the best part of a decade, and despite medicinal cannabis being legal in Canberra, she sometimes has to turn to street drugs to relieve her suffering. Key points: AMA says GPs lack training in medicinal cannabis prescription Canberra grandmother reports unwillingness amongst doctors to prescribe Chronic Pain Australia bemoans "lack of appetite" from doctors The grandmother has spent many days in bed wishing her pain would disappear and never return — a feeling she finds difficult to describe. "I call it a 'throbbing' going throug

'Passive smoking' defence clears woman of drug driving as research casts doubt on roadside t

Photo: Police officers take saliva swabs from drivers as part of the roadside drug driving tests. (ABC North Coast: Gemma Sapwell) Related Story: Calls to relax Canberra's drug-driving laws as the ACT looks to legalise cannabis Related Story: Medicinal cannabis driving plan 'inconsistent' with road safety objectives External Link: Magistrate questions NSW drug driving testing program The accuracy of drug driving tests has been called into question after a landmark court ruling and new research by a leading academic. Data collected by Sydney University has revealed roadside mobile saliva tests returned inaccurate results more than 20 per cent of the time when testing oral fluids for tetrahydr

Treating dogs with cannabis extract shows ‘promising’ results

Could cannabis change the lives of dogs? (Getty) Many people already swear by cannabis extract CBD, claiming it can treat anything from anxiety to cancer – but could it be a revolutionary treatment for epileptic dogs? A pilot study of dogs has found that it is ‘promising and exciting’ as a treatment for dogs with epilepsy, said Dr. Stephanie McGrath of Colorado State University. Dr McGrath’s team found that 89% of dogs who received CBD in the clinical trial had a reduction in the frequency of seizures.. Idiopathic epilepsy affects up to 5.7% of the pet dog population worldwide, the researchers say. ‘Cannabidiol’ (CBD), is a chemical from cannabis which campaigners claim helps with diseases

Exclusive: Guillain–Barre syndrome sufferer says 'illegal' cannabis saved his life

Imagine being diagnosed with a rare disorder which sees your own immune system damages your nerve cells, causing severe pain, muscle weakness and even paralysis. Now imagine if you found out cannabis could greatly improve your quality of life by reducing the debilitating symptoms. Would you be considered a dangerous criminal in the eyes of police and self-medicate with cannabis or would you continue to suffer long-term problems to stay within the confines of the law? For Craig McGarry, the decision was the former. Craig McGarry was just 18 when he was diagnosed with Guillain–Barre syndrome. (Supplied) The 59-year-old told he has been suffering Guillain–Barre syndrome for the past

'Some are alarmed my 12yo is in a medical cannabis trial. But life is difficult enough.'

We celebrate when my 12-year-old daughter Rebecca puts her school uniform on without refusing, when she doesn’t swear at her teachers or peers, and doesn’t lift up her dress to seek attention. A good day is when Rebecca doesn’t throw herself on the ground in a tantrum or say she won’t go to her weekly after school therapy sessions. Most mornings, I feel like I have run a marathon before we get out the door. Rebecca is more than a handful and that is okay, I love my daughter, she is my shining light. I’ve learnt to adjust my barometer of what’s ‘normal’. Rebecca has a rare genetic condition called FOXP1 Syndrome which is neurodevelopmental and behavioural in nature. It took us nine years befo

Doctors still sceptical of medicinal cannabis, study finds

Medical professionals want more information about medicinal cannabis before they start prescribing it to patients, a new study has found. Researchers from the Queensland University of Technology conducted a wide-ranging review of 26 published studies across Australia, the United States, Canada and Ireland. Health professionals support medicinal cannabis as a treatment option but many don't know enough about it. Credit: Alamy QUT pharmacy PhD candidate Kyle Gardiner led the analysis and said the main theme running through all the studies was that medical professionals broadly supported the idea of medicinal cannabis but lacked information about it. “Health professionals support medicinal cann

Parents gave their 6-month-old son CBD oil while he was going through chemo. They say ‘a drop the si

Double Windsor Films | The Dwyer family. When Danielle and Brian Dwyer’s son Waldo was six months old, he was diagnosed with a rare form of eye cancer that required chemotherapy. After starting chemo, Waldo couldn’t sleep, had trouble eating and going to the bathroom, and kept vomiting. In search of a solution, the Philadelphia-based family went to California to get CBD oil for Waldo, which was illegal in their home state at the time. “We gave him a drop the size of a grain of rice and he was eating, laughing, going to the bathroom again,” Brian Dwyer said of the cannabis oil’s effects on his son. “Within the first hour of giving it to him, he stopped throwing up.” Their story is the topic o

Olivia Newton-John supports use of medicinal cannabis in Australia

Olivia Newton-John has pleaded with authorities to fix the shambolic state of legal medicinal cannabis in Australia. The entertainment legend said she is a regular user of medicinal cannabis to help relieve the symptoms of metastatic breast cancer, and that patient access must be improved in Australia. There are only 57 authorised prescribers of medicinal cannabis. Speaking exclusively to The Sunday Telegraph to promote the new Australian documentary High As Mike, which examines the current cumbersome patient access scheme, Ms Newton-John, 70, said her husband grows the marijuana for her. Olivia Newton-John talks about her experience with using cannabis to help with her cancer on the new doc

Legal cannabis could earn $1b tax revenue and create 250,000 jobs

Gorilla Pure Kush is just one of the many varieties of marijuana for sale at the Santa Ysabel Smoke Shop and Dispensary (MediaNews Group via Getty Images) It’s 2019 and marijuana is now recreationally legal in Canada and across 10 states in the US. And it appears allowing adults to legally purchase and consume cannabis is big business. According to The State of Legal Marijuana Markets report, Canadians spent $A2.28 billion on legal weed in 2018, with the Colorado Department of Revenue saying the state’s regulated pot industry has generated more than $A8.5 billion in sales since legal recreational marijuana sales began in 2014. Investment strategist Mark Bernberg said Australia was losing bi

Police courteous during raid of Nimbin Hemp Embassy

Nimbin’s Hemp Embassy. The police raid on the Hemp Embassy in Nimbin yesterday delivered 7.5kg of cannabis leaf and ‘more than 500 pre-rolled cannabis “joints”, a small amount of an illicit substance believed to be methylamphetamine, and cash,’ said Richmond police in a press release this morning. While the raid took up a significant amount of time and resources both on the part of the police and the organisers of the 27th Nimbin Mardi Grass, that gets off to a start with the Hemposium conference at 12 noon today, president of Nimbin’s HEMP Embassy and Australias HEMP Party Michael Balderstone told Echonetdaily that the police conducting the raid were ‘courteous and used their discretion’.

POLICE RAID: Nimbin Hemp Embassy targeted before MardiGrass

Nimbin Hemp Embassy is being raided. File pic of last year's MardiGrass. ABOUT 50 people have been forced to leave the Hemp Embassy in Nimbin this morning as police search the premises the day before MardiGrass. A MardiGrass volunteer, who asked to remain anonymous, said 20 police arrived at the embassy shortly after 11am on Thursday with sniffer dogs and are not letting anyone into the building. "They have a search warrant for the hemp embassy building," the volunteers said. "No one is allowed in the building, the whole thing is blocked off." The volunteer said today was the "busiest day" of the year for the Hemp Embassy as they prepare for the three day Mardi Grass festival, which starts o

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