Why the ACT to Decriminalize Small Amounts of Illegal Drugs


If your name is Dazza and you like to do whippets in the bush, then maybe it’s time for you to move to Canberra. Because the ACT government wants to decriminalize small amounts of illegal drugs. According Canberra timethese drugs include MDMA, cannabis, methamphetamine, cocaine, heroin, LSD and the psilocybin found in mushrooms.

Health Minister Rachel Stephen-Smith argued the move was smart because drug use should be seen as a health issue rather than a criminal one. The ABC reported that she said: “We know from research and evidence around the world that criminalizing drug users does not reduce drug use and that treating drug addiction as a health condition improves results for all members of the community.”

Stephen-Smith also said: ‘This legislation is part of our broader set of policies developed in partnership with experts, people with lived experience and our alcohol and other drugs sector to help those who have it. most need to get the help and services they need when they need them.”

It should be noted that the ACT will not facilitate the sale of their items to drug dealers. “Illegal drugs are harmful and the ACT government will continue to take a strong stance against drug traffickers. This bill does not change that view,” Stephen-Smith said, according to Canberra time. She further affirmed, “The government and ACT Policing will continue to work to reduce supply and prosecute dealers and traffickers through the legal system.”

But this bill does more than just decriminalize small amounts of certain drugs. It also allows the police to fine someone $100 for using illegal drugs. The police can do that instead of putting that person in the criminal justice ring. If that person is unable or unwilling to pay this fine, they can instead apply to a drug diversion program.

So what do the people of Canberran think of this bill? Well, most likely, pretty well. According to an ACT government Press releasepoll data indicates that only one in ten Canberrans think possession of illegal drugs should be a prisonable offence.

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