NEWS

Cannabis could be used in dementia treatment after world-first trial in Perth

A world-first study is about to take place in Perth to find out if cannabis can improve the quality of life of people with dementia. Credit: Getty Images A world-first study is about to take place in Perth to find out if cannabis can improve the quality of life of people with dementia. Aged care facilities are hoping it will help the people they look after lead happier lives, with less medication. The University of Notre Dame's Institute for Health Research is looking for candidates for its study, aimed at relieving symptoms that not only affect patients but also their families and loved ones. Growing in a laboratory in Slovenia is a cannabis crop that researchers will test on patients to se

Public servants told: keep off grass

Laws will make smoking cannabis legal in the nation’s capital from January. Picture: AP/Richard Vogel A former Australian Public Service commissioner has warned highly paid Canberra bureaucrats should not smoke cannabis ­despite laws making it legal in the nation’s capital from January. John Lloyd said clarification was needed over workplace rules for public servants following the passage of the new ACT laws. He argued that while there were clear expectations in relation to alcohol use, policymakers and bureaucrats needed to understand workplace rules around cannabis use. “It is of concern,” he said. “I think that, yes, there should be some caution in the APS about the impact of this. And I

Greg Hunt 'concerned' about legalisation of cannabis but no plans to override ACT law

Health minister says he will leave legal issues to attorney general as criticism from senior ministers grows. Health minister Greg Hunt says he is ‘very concerned’ by the legalisation of cannabis in the ACT as it poses ‘a very significant health risk’. Photograph: Enigma/Alamy Stock Photo/Alamy Stock Photo The Morrison government has “no plans” to override the Australian Capital Territory’s new law legalising possession of cannabis, the health minister Greg Hunt has said. On Friday Hunt and treasurer Josh Frydenberg added to a growing chorus of senior federal ministers criticising the law – of which home affairs minister Peter Dutton is most vocal – but held the line against directly overrid

The NSW government says it approves medicinal cannabis applications within 48 hours. Newly obtained

Medicinal cannabis applications take longer than the NSW government says they do. (Photo by Artur Widak/NurPhoto via Getty Images) Documents obtained by Business Insider Australia have revealed the actual waiting times experienced by medicinal cannabis patients in New South Wales, with a large number of cases exceeding the government’s stated 48-hour turnaround window. The 48-hour application scheme for medicinal cannabis was rolled out in NSW, Victoria, and Queensland in July last year, with the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) allowing prescribers in approved jurisdictions to submit applications electronically to both the TGA and a state or territory health department simultaneously.

ACT legalises recreational cannabis use

The ACT has legalised recreational cannabis use. Picture: istock The nation’s capital made history on Wednesday, becoming the first Australian jurisdiction to legalise cannabis for recreational use. The bill, bought by Labor backbencher Michael Pettersson, was passed in the ACT Legislative Assembly with the backing of the Greens. Expected to be rolled out next year, the bill will allow Canberrans over 18 to possess 50 grams of cannabis and to grow two plants. ACT shadow attorney-general Jeremy Hanson told the assembly the Liberal opposition would not support the bill as it was poorly drafted and could lead to a number of “perverse outcomes”. Mr Hanson said he was concerned the bill would enc

ACT set to pass bill making cannabis legal for personal use

But the move might clash with federal drug laws. Credit: 7NEWS / Getty The ACT Legislative Assembly is expected to pass a bill legalising possessing and growing cannabis for personal use in the nation's capital. The private member's bill on Wednesday from Labor backbencher Michael Pettersson would allow Canberrans over 18 to possess 50 grams of cannabis and grow two plants. Labor needs the support of the Greens to pass the bill, and they have offered their conditional support. While legalising the drug might clash with federal drug laws, Mr Pettersson on Tuesday told AAP he was "very confident" there wouldn't be any problems. But in a report on the bill, the ACT government said it could not

Possessing and growing cannabis looks set to be legalised in the ACT

A cannabis plant in Paris, France. Source: AAP The recreational use of cannabis in Canberra looks likely to become legal as the ACT Legislative Assembly is set to pass a bill. Possessing and growing cannabis for personal use looks set to become legal in the nation's capital. The ACT Legislative Assembly is expected to pass a private member's bill on Wednesday from Labor backbencher Michael Pettersson that would allow Canberrans over 18 to possess 50 grams of cannabis and grow two plants. Labor needs the backing of the Greens to pass the bill, and they have offered conditional support ACT shadow attorney-general Jeremy Hanson told the assembly on Wednesday the Liberal opposition would not be

Willie Rioli tests positive to cannabis, says AFL

The career of West Coast star Willie Rioli has been thrown into further turmoil, with the AFL announcing that a drug test allegedly found cannabis in his system on the night of the elimination final win over Essendon. Rioli had already been cited for an alleged urine substitution violation on August 20, for which he is serving a provisional suspension. Willie Rioli was already serving a provisional suspension for allegedly tampering with a urine sample on August 20. Credit: AAP But on Tuesday, the AFL issued a statement declaring Rioli had been notified of a positive test for "a metabolite of cannabis," which is an in-competition prohibited substance under the AFL's anti-doping code. "The AF

Thailand: Cannabis cultivation scales up

Anutin sees largest facility for growing herb in Asean embark on first crop. Inspecting the goods: Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul attends a special cannabis planting ceremony at an organic farm in Chiang Mai's Maejo University. At least 12,000 cannabis sprouts have been planted. CHAING MAI: The country's largest lot of 12,000 cannabis sprouts has been planted in Maejo University's medical-grade greenhouse, thought to be the first-ever industrial-scale medical cannabis manufacturing facility in the Asean region. They were planted with the aim of producing one million bottles containing five millilitres each of cannabis oil for patients in need by next February. A special planting

Labor backbencher 'very confident' cannabis bill will pass

Canberra won't be the next Canada or Colorado, where marijuana is sold in shops, according to the ACT politician behind the push to legalise the drug for personal use in the territory. Michael Pettersson is also assured that his proposed cannabis bill won't clash with Commonwealth law, despite the ACT government warning that Canberrans could still be prosecuted for possessing and growing the plants under the new regime. Labor backbencher Michael Pettersson, who is "very confident" his proposed cannabis bill will be passed. Picture: Dion Georgopoulos Mr Pettersson's bill is due to be debated in the ACT Legislative Assembly next Wednesday, with the Labor backbencher saying he was "very confide

Laws to legalise cannabis for personal use in the ACT could pass next week

Laws that would legalise cannabis for personal use could be passed next week but the government has warned possessing and growing the drug could still carry a risk of prosecution. The ACT government will introduce amendments to the private members bill it hopes will resolve those potential conflicts with Commonwealth law. The government has also flagged the possibility of the federal government intervening to override the laws. The bill, which would legalise the possession of 50 grams of cannabis for adults, was introduced by Labor backbencher Michael Pettersson about a year ago. It will come back before ACT Parliament on Wednesday for final debate and a likely vote. The bill that would lega

Olivia Newton-John talks about her cancer centre with politicians in Canberra

Looking perennially youthful eight days before her 71st birthday and in good spirits despite reportedly battling stage-four breast cancer, Australia's favourite girl-next-door, Olivia Newton-John, was in Canberra on Wednesday to meet with politicians about her cancer centre. Olivia Newton-John in the public gallery with her husband John Easterling (middle) Picture: Getty Images She was in the public gallery during question time with her husband John Easterling, who she credits for introducing her to the benefits of pain relief from medicinal cannabis. Newton-John, who turns 71 on September 26, met with Health Minister Greg Hunt and Opposition Leader Anthony Albanese. Mr Hunt tweeted after me

Man insists cannabis plants were for personal use only

A court has been told a man found with 27 cannabis plants in his home grew the narcotic for his own use. James Dickson was convicted and placed on a 12-month community corrections order after pleading guilty in the Bendigo Magistrates' Court to cultivating cannabis, possessing cannabis, refusing an oral fluid test and failing to wear a seatbelt. Dickson's first offences came in February this year, when police saw him driving without a seatbelt. He was pulled over and spoken to about the seatbelt, before undergoing a preliminary oral fluid test for drugs, which returned a positive result. Dickson agreed to do the second test while seated in his vehicle, but after the swab broke off in his mou

NZ: Helen Clark says new medicinal cannabis scheme too expensive

Helen Clark says the way forward is full legislation. Credits: Newshub. The Government's new medicinal cannabis scheme will prove too expensive for most people, according to former Prime Minister Helen Clark. She says the scheme is far too narrow - and the way forward is full legalisation. She's not alone. New Zealand doctors want the power to prescribe medicinal cannabis Duncan Garner: Kiwis being let down by conservative stance on medicinal cannabis 'It is not enough': Campaigner blasts Government's medicinal cannabis bill as weak, clueless "Yes there will be product available, and doctors will be able to prescribe them," NZ Drug Foundation executive director Ross Bell said. "But the barri

Thais allowed six cannabis plants per household under draft law

FILE PHOTO: A man smells cannabis plants as he attends Cannabis Expo in Buriram province, Thailand, April 19, 2019. REUTERS/Prapan Chankaew/File Photo BANGKOK: A party in Thailand's ruling coalition has proposed a draft law that would allow Thais to grow a limited amount of cannabis at home, less than a year after the country legalised the drug for medicinal purposes and research. Under Thailand's current drug laws, recreational users of cannabis can incur tough penalties, including up to 10 years in prison for possession and hefty fines. A senior lawmaker in the Bhumjaithai Party, third-largest partner in the coalition and in charge of the health ministry, said the draft law would allow up

Mobile cannabis tests on drivers gave inaccurate results, researchers say

Researchers from the University of Sydney have raised concerns over the reliability of mobile drug testing on drivers after two devices used by NSW Police were found to have produced inaccurate results when testing for cannabis. The study found the devices that test for tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) in saliva frequently failed to detect high amounts of cannabis use but often produced positive readings for extremely low levels of THC - the active ingredient in cannabis. The Securetec DrugWipe: New research has cast doubt on the accuracy of mobile drug testing devices. Credit: Rohan Thomson Senior author of the study Iain McGregor said the devices were "wildly inaccurate" in many ways, and called

Medicinal cannabis is legal but my 91-year-old mum's struggle to get it was torture

Medicinal cannabis may be legal but obtaining it has been an exercise in the absurd. My mother, Patricia, is 91 years old. She has spondylitis, which means she is bent over like a question mark and in pain. Eighteen months ago she fractured her L2 vertebrae when my father fell on her. She has macular degeneration. She was diagnosed with leukaemia but the medicos got that wrong then revised it to liver cancer. As she has no symptoms she’s decided to ignore them. Rightly so. It was a long and tortuous path to pain relief from medical cannabis, but it finally came for Patricia Brierley. She also has bursitis. We think this came from when she didn’t let go of the retractable hose and went flying

First cannabis cruise to sail out of Canada this month

A cannabis cruise will be sailing out of Windsor this month to celebrate the opening of the city’s first legal dispensary. And it was so popular, organisers are already planning a second departure. The cruise, held by Windsor River Cruises and Border City Entertainment, will sail down the Detroit river for three hours on 20 September, with the second cruise slated in for 26 September. “It was supposed to be — you know — a big party a big celebration of the legalization,” Jessilin Deschamps, the promotional manager for Windsor River Cruises, told CBC. Deschamps said the cruise will not supply any cannabis, but passengers will be within their legal right to bring their own and use it on a desi

NT could follow Canada on legal cannabis: MP

The Northern Territory should consider following Canada's lead and legalising cannabis, says government MP Jeff Collins who is in Montreal. The legalisation of marijuana in the Northern Territory should be considered, says a Labor government MP currently in Canada where the drug was made legal on Wednesday. Jeff Collins, the member for Fong Lim in Darwin and a former lawyer, supports the NT decriminalising all illicit drugs for personal use and possession as Portugal has done. His stated "personal position" is to go further and legalise drugs so governments can tax it, rather than rich criminals profit. But he has only advocated decriminalisation as chair of a government committee looking in

Cannabis prohibition doesn't work anywhere. It's New Zealand's turn to legalise it

A ‘yes’ in the referendum is a vote to regulate rather than criminalise a drug that’s widely used and less problematic than alcohol. Evidence from longitudinal studies … indicates that by the age of 25, 80% of New Zealanders will have tried cannabis at least once.’ Photograph: Richard Vogel/AP In New Zealand, cannabis is classified as an illegal drug under the Misuse of Drugs Act 1975. Its possession, use and supply are subject variously to penalties ranging in severity from fines to many years of imprisonment. On Wednesday, the Helen Clark Foundation released a report which sets out the case for legalising and regulating cannabis. New Zealanders have the opportunity to vote for that in a re

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