The movement that cannabis saw in 2018 has given activists and consumers a renewed drive with the belief that change really might be possible. Seeing the UK Home Office change its stance from “cannabis has no medical benefit in herbal form” and “is dangerous to children and the developing mind”, to then prescribing cannabis as a medicine for children with neurological disorders such as severe epilepsy, opened up a lot of people’s eyes – people who had been lied to by the mainstream media and even our own family members when growing up.
There are public talks taking place around the UK by academics, cannabis social clubs, and even charities. Parents are taking to the mainstream media to tell their stories about how their children are being denied medicine still. People aren’t willing to stay quiet anymore. Even the British Medical Journal (BMJ) has said that it will be campaigning for greater awareness for patient access after publishing an article by the UKCSC.
Norman Lamb MP for North Norfolk, a former Health Minister, has been persistent in trying to bring about political awareness and change for cannabis laws. He recently introduced a ten-minute bill amid the chaos of the Brexit debates. The bill was voted down but by a very narrow margin – another encouraging moment for those supporting reform. It also gave us a nice list of politicians that are in favour of cannabis reform.
While the Home Secretary Sajid Javid made bold moves to bring about changes to medical cannabis laws he has also said that medical legalisation is in no way a step towards recreational legalisation. But when he said medical cannabis would be rescheduled to help people get the access they need it was followed up with a policy that means even the most desperate of children are still being denied, meaning pretty much no one is any better off.
Sadly the public thinks that the medical cannabis problem is now fixed. Patients tell us every day that they are being congratulated on having their medicine legalised. This can feel like a kick in the teeth knowing that the cannabis we are using as patients is still illegal and could land us a criminal record. But this is exactly why it’s going to be a big year for cannabis… because you’re going to help make it so!
Finding people with a misunderstanding about cannabis is the perfect chance for activists and consumers to spread the awareness and inform those who believe it’s available to those who need it that this still isn’t true. More people are aware of the benefits of cannabis than ever though, and it’s becoming increasingly hard to find people that are outright against it.
So why is cannabis going to have such a good year in the UK in 2019?
Corporate cannabis is coming
Not that many people are happy about it, but the truth is, a lot of the impetus for change is being driven by those with their eyes on the big money. They have the resources that cannabis activists can only dream of. Highly commercial enterprises from the tobacco and alcohol industries have been making giant moves investing literally billions of dollars into Canadian licensed producers in a bid to become the biggest and the best ahead of a global rollout. Companies like Canopy Growth have already branched out to Chile, Germany and now the UK as of October 2018. That means more legal cannabis jobs in the UK… but not quite the kind the average cannabis consumer may have been dreaming of.
People are angry
The truth is out! Cannabis IS medicine and you can’t put that genie back in the bottle. People have been lied to by the Government while they have been licencing the largest exporter of medical cannabis in the world, with several ministers’ partners embroiled in the political scandal. Children are still being denied access, loved ones lost who could have had their pain eased in their dying days or who are still be with us feel they have been betrayed, and they now want to do something about it. Who wouldn’t?
People want to see something happen
If the Government isn’t going to do it, who will? The people – that’s who. And that’s you. Being a cannabis consumer that is just watching this go on by without making an effort to change it helps keep this destructive antisocial system stay the way it is. If we want to see something other than a full-on corporate cannabis takeover then we need to offer that difference to cannabis consumers ourselves. The idea of only being able to buy cannabis that is grown in North America where no British people are given jobs to grow cannabis here at home, with all the extra air miles and carbon footprint, worries consumers. What about the benefits of cannabis to the UK economy? We need to harness that for ourselves, not hand it over to another continent!