Home Affairs Committee - Drugs: Breaking the CycleWritten evidence submitted by Elizabeth Wallace (DP115)

I am writing with regard to the Committee undertaking a comprehensive review of drugs policy in the New Year. Below are my comments in response to you allowing us to make written submissions regarding drugs.

I am 44 years old, a home-educator and a carer for my disabled husband who is 59. I have just finished my exams for accountancy. We are currently being prosecuted for an alleged charge for the production of cannabis. We are pleading not guilty and are using the report Cannabis: The Facts, Human Rights and the Law as our defence. The report includes a comprehensive collation of the official findings of fact and conclusions of the medico-scientific clinical empirical studies conducted by world-respected U.S. academic and research institutions into the smoking of cannabis (marihuana). The report is an authoritative insight into the real, but concealed, illegal reason behind Prohibition: ulterior money-motive. The report quotes legal grounds (national and international) which demonstrate numerous infractions of laws by the prohibition legislation, and which show all acts of its enforcement to be crime per se. No genuine evidence exists to support prohibition. Faced with this shocking discrepancy between exonerative facts and mal indoctrination, people find themselves perplexed and ask “if cannabis is clinically proven to be harmless, why does the government say the contrary and punish innocent people?” The report reveals that the disinformation results from a massive but concealed motive.

1. Is the present policy fiscally responsible?

In the report Cannabis: The Facts, Human Rights and the Law I refer to Part 6, Prohibition: The Progenitor (originator) of Crime. The prohibition of cannabis is a huge cost to society including corruption on the largest scale, huge enforcement budgets, but by far the biggest cost is to those people who would benefit from cannabis use, this is covered extensively with empirical (human) studies in Part 3 of the report. I would also like to bring to your attention the most up to date and authoritative evidence available which is “Taxing the UK Cannabis Market” bringing your attention to part 10,summary and conclusions.

2. Is policy grounded in science, health, security and Human Rights?

I again refer to the report. Cannabis: The Facts, Human Rights and the Law Part 1 Studies, Statistics and The Supreme Law. Cannabis is non-toxic 100%. The word drug is wrong and inapplicable to cannabis. Cannabis cannot be proven to be harmless despite that no evidence exists to show harm, this is because over 200 separate components need to be tested to prove cannabis safe; this would be an astronomical cost. THC is not cannabis, many studies done today involve THC or cannaboids, these are concentrated chemical compounds and when in combination with the other compounds within the herb it is not THC as nature makes it into another single substance. I now refer to the Home Office Report regarding the Governments position on cannabis. Cannabis: Classification and Public Health. Many of these studies are on THC and not empirical studies on cannabis the herb, it also made its decisions on evidence from the bibliography. In the bibliography are 20 out 47 articles are on schizophrenia and psychoses. I would now like to bring to your attention Systematic Review of the Incidence and Prevalence of Schizophrenia and Other Psychoses in England, Feb 2011, and commissioned by The Department of Health. Overall there was no evidence that the incidence of schizophrenia and all types of psychoses had changed over time. As for Human Rights issues cannabis prohibition breaches the following articles of the 1948 treaty, Universal Declaration of Human Rights: Article 1, 2, 3, 7, 8, 9, 10, 12, 16, 21, 26, 28, 29 and 30 as the prohibition is scientifically unfounded, technically inept, acutely criminogenic, counterproductive, destructive, tyrannical, flagrantly in breach of laws and contravenes human rights.

3. The criteria used by the Government to measure the efficacy of its drug policies?

Many people are being made criminals for a harmless benign herb; please refer to The report Cannabis: The Facts, Human Rights and the Law.

4. The independence and quality of expert advice which is being given to the government

I refer to The Department of Health’s Systematic Review of the Incidence and Prevalence of Schizophrenia and Other Psychoses in England. The findings of which found no evidence to suggest rates of the prevalence of Schizophrenia and Other Psychoses had changed over time.

5. Whether drug related policing and expenditure is likely to decrease in line with police budgets and what impact this may have

According to the IDMU report “Taxing the UK Cannabis Market”; £500 million is spent every year on the criminal justice system for cannabis alone of which £200 million is for police costs. This is not an effective use of money that could be spent on serious crime.

6. The cost effectiveness of different policies to reduce drug usage

People from time immemorial have used drugs, there have always users and abusers, and this will not stop. Cannabis on the other hand is not a drug it is a benign herb as proved in empirical, scientific studies, please refer to the report. Cannabis: The Facts, Human Rights and the Law.

7. The extent to which public health considerations should play a leading role in developing drugs policy

“The regular long term smoking of cannabis causes no mental or physical deterioration.” Quote from, New York Academy of Medicine. We rely on people in authority to inform not misinform us. Cannabis is harmless and is the most tested plant on the planet. I feel the government and media have relied on people’s fears by keeping us ignorant of the truth. Money motive is behind prohibition as is shown throughout The report. Cannabis: The Facts, Human Rights and the Law. Consideration should be given towards the empirical (human) studies and their therapeutic applications and the government should read all (not just the headlines) of the reports that they have asked to be performed, not shove under the carpet what they do not want to hear.

8. The relationship between drug and alcohol abuse

The report Cannabis: The Facts, Human Rights and the Law covers the comparison of cannabis to other substances by official mortality statistics deaths per year U.S. Page 2 of The report: tobacco 340,000 to 450,000. Alcohol 150,000+. Aspirin 180–1000. Caffeine 1000–10,000. Legal drug overdose 14,000–27,000. Illicit drug overdose 3,800–5,200. Theophylline (asthma) 3,800–5,200. CANNABIS 0. This shows cannabis to be harmless.

9. The comparative harm and cost of legal and illegal drugs

Many people will always take recreational drugs and some people will always have addictive personalities. It is not justified to make criminals out of many to try, and fail to protect the few who would look for anything. Better to get hold of safe recreational drugs legally rather than these new ones on the black market today that can really harm our children.

10. The impact of the transfer of functions of the national treatment agency for substance misuse to public health England and how this will affect the provision of treatment

Sorry do not understand question.

11. The availability of “legal highs” and the challenges associated with adapting the legal framework to deal with new substances

Synthetic THC and cannabinoids, manufactured to avoid the laws against cannabis are proving far more harmful than cannabis itself. Making criminals out of young people who are only growing up and testing parameters is wrong. For the vast majority, they grow up and move on making perfectly reasonable lives for themselves and their families.

12. The links between drugs, organised crime and terrorism

The cannabis market in Britain is worth at least £6 billion, which the government has abandoned to organised crime. Illegal cannabis farms are producing poor quality weed, often with human trafficked labour and providing funding for other crime and terrorism—all a direct result of current policy. Legalising and taxing cannabis like tea and coffee is the way forward.

13. Whether the UK is supporting its global partners effectively and what changes may occur with the introduction of the national crime agency

The report Cannabis: The Facts, Human Rights and the Law, page 57, show how cannabis has numerous applications and the prohibition of it is detrimental to the planet.

14. Whether detailed consideration ought to be given to alternative ways of tackling the drugs dilemma, as recommended by the Select Committee in 2002 (the Government’s drug policy: Is it working?, HC318,2001–2) and the Justice Committee’s 2010 Report on justice reinvestment (cutting crime: the case for justice reinvestment, HC94, 2009–10)

Decriminalisation of cannabis is not an option, as legislation allows personal possession of small quantities which stimulates demand while continuing to constrict legal supply. This engenders the highest black market prices, producing the most incentive to crime. For example in decriminalised Holland, Belgium and Germany by weight black market cannabis can exceed the price of gold and seeds of preferred varieties sell at prices above £14. Instead of the beneficial transformation of society by re-legalised cannabis being cheap and available next to tea, decriminalisation actually brings increased black market prices, more crime, constricted supply, social turmoil, extra taxes and controls and ironically criminalisation. By contrast re-legalisation would result in mass agriculture of THC rich cannabis sativa for fibre, seed food and for the bulk wood hurds residues, the cannabis biomass energy equation, plastics, lubricants, paper, card and building materials. All of the above are studied extensively in The report. Cannabis: The Facts, Human Rights and the Law.

15. In summary all the information that is out there that I have found tells me that cannabis is harmless and shouldn’t be classified with harmful drugs and the untold harm prohibition has caused over many years making criminals out of people because of politics and the Big Pharma and mans greed. Many of our human right laws are being broken daily and the organised crime has caused many deaths and much suffering. Surely this should be put right. I urge you to read the report Cannabis: The Facts, Human Rights and the Law so you may too learn what is really behind prohibition.

January 2012

Prepared 8th December 2012