The UK government is planning to review the current laws on cannabis and its potential medical benefits. This blog post looks at when this might happen.
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Cannabis has been illegal in the UK since 1928, but there is a growing movement for change. In 2018, a leaked Home Office document suggested that the UK government was planning to decriminalise cannabis within the next five to ten years. This would mean that possession of small amounts of cannabis would no longer be a criminal offence.
The UK government has not confirmed these plans, but it is clear that public opinion is shifting on this issue. A 2018 YouGov poll found that 52% of Britons think cannabis should be legalised, while just 25% think it should remain illegal.
It remains to be seen when or if cannabis will be legalised in the UK, but it seems likely that change is on the horizon.
The UK’s current stance on cannabis
The United Kingdom has a very particular stance on cannabis. The drug has been illegal since 1928, but there have been many changes in recent years. In 2016, the UK legalised medical cannabis, and there has been a growing movement to legalise the drug for recreational use. However, the UK government has made it clear that they have no plans to legalise cannabis in the near future.
The UK’s current drug laws
The UK has some of the most restrictive drug laws in Europe. Cannabis is classified as a Class B drug, meaning that it is illegal to possess, cultivate, supply or import. The maximum penalty for cultivation is 14 years imprisonment and/or an unlimited fine. The maximum penalty for supply or import is 14 years imprisonment and/or an unlimited fine.
However, the UK’s stance on cannabis is slowly changing. In 2018, the government announced a review of the classification of cannabis, with a view to potentially downgrade it to Class C. This would mean that possession would be punishable by a maximum of 2 years imprisonment and/or an unlimited fine, while cultivation would be punishable by a maximum of 5 years imprisonment and/or an unlimited fine.
The government has also recently approved the use of medical cannabis for certain conditions, such as epilepsy and multiple sclerosis. While this does not mean that recreational use of cannabis will be legalised, it does show that attitudes are beginning to change.
It is unclear when exactly cannabis will be legalised in the UK, but it seems likely that it will happen within the next few years.
The UK’s current medical cannabis laws
In the UK, cannabis is classified as a Class B drug and is illegal to grow, possess or deal. However, following a number of high-profile cases, the government amended the law in 2018 to make it legal for doctors to prescribe medicinal cannabis.
While the change in law was widely welcomed, it has been criticized for not going far enough. Some doctors are reluctant to prescribe medicinal cannabis because it remains classified as a Schedule 1 drug (meaning it is considered to have no therapeutic value) and there is a lack of clinical trials proving its efficacy.
As a result, many people who could benefit from medicinal cannabis are still forced to buy it illegally. In November 2018, the government announced a review of the evidence around medicinal cannabis with a view to rescheduling it. The review is due to be completed in spring 2019.
It is also worth noting that recreational use of cannabis remains illegal in the UK and possession can result in up to five years in prison.
When could cannabis be legalised in the UK?
There is currently a public consultation underway in the UK about the legalisation of cannabis. The government is asking the public for their opinion on whether or not cannabis should be legalised. The consultation will close on the 19th of October, 2018.
The UK government’s recent review of cannabis
In October 2018, the UK government’s Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs (ACMD) released a review of cannabis. The review was commissioned in response to increasing public concern over the legal status of cannabis and its potential harms.
The ACMD’s review found that there is no single answer to the question of when or if cannabis should be legalised in the UK. Instead, the council recommended a series of evidence-based measures that would help minimise the risks associated with cannabis use.
These measures include:
-increasing public education on the risks of cannabis use;
-restrictions on advertising and promotion of cannabis products;
-tight controls on the potency of cannabis products sold;
-high taxes on cannabis products to deter use; and
-regular reviews of the effectiveness of these measures.
The UK’s upcoming general election
The UK’s upcoming general election on December 12th could result in the legalisation of cannabis. The main political party pushing for this change is the Liberal Democrats, who have pledged to legalise and regulate cannabis in their manifesto. This would mean that cannabis would be sold in licensed shops to people over the age of 18, and the tax revenue would be used to fund public health initiatives.
The party is also advocating for a review of the UK’s drug laws, with a view to decriminalising possession of all drugs for personal use. This would mean that people caught with small amounts of drugs would not face criminal charges, but would instead receive a civil penalty such as a fine. The Liberal Democrats believe that this approach would free up police resources to focus on serious crime, and reduce the harm caused by drug prohibition.
While the legalisation of cannabis is not currently supported by either of the two main parties (the Conservatives and Labour), it is possible that this could change if the Liberal Democrats win enough seats in the election. With public opinion increasingly in favour of legalisation, it is possible that we could see major changes to UK drug laws in the near future.
Now that we know when cannabis will be legal in the UK, it’s time to start preparing for the big day! Make sure you have a safe place to grow your plants, and that you know the best ways to cannabis. You’ll also want to stock up on supplies like pipes, bongs, and other smoking accessories.And remember, always Smoke Responsibly!