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St Lucia group concerned over Jamaica’s move to decriminalise marijuana

 

marijuanaplantThe Cannabis Movement of St. Lucia (CMSL) Tuesday expressed concern over a decision by the Jamaica government to implement changes in relation to the possession and smoking of marijuana.

The CMSL said that the move announced last week breaks ranks with the position adopted by the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) to deal with the marijuana issue on a regional basis.

Justice Minister Mark Golding announced the changes last Thursday. Among the changes were that users of small quantities of marijuana will no longer have a criminal record, and smoking of the illegal drug would be de-criminalised under certain conditions.

According to Golding, Cabinet had approved the decision to amend the Dangerous Drugs Act to make a ticketable offence, the possession of two ounces (0.057 kilograms ) or less of marijuana. This means it will no longer be an arrestable offence, but one which will attract a fine, and will not give rise to a criminal record.

But in a statement, CMSL chairman, Andre Decaires, said he is concerned that Jamaica made its decision “unilaterally” and broke ranks with the rest of CARICOM.

Decaires said the Jamaican decision could be “a double-edged sword”, while at the same time sending a “good signal” to the rest of the region.

“Jamaica obviously sees the economics of decriminalising marijuana, and what it can signal to the rest of the Caribbean is that they too can break ranks and not make it a regional decision,” Decaires said.
The Medical Association of Jamaica (MAJ) has taken issue with the changes proposed by the government in relation to the possession and smoking of marijuana.

It has warned that the relaxation of the laws will lead to more usage and consequently more mental problems among the population.

The MAJ has since asked the Cabinet to reconsider its position in line with health practice and science.

 

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marijuanaplantThe Cannabis Movement of St. Lucia (CMSL) Tuesday expressed concern over a decision by the Jamaica government to implement changes in relation to the possession and smoking of marijuana.

The CMSL said that the move announced last week breaks ranks with the position adopted by the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) to deal with the marijuana issue on a regional basis.

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Justice Minister Mark Golding announced the changes last Thursday. Among the changes were that users of small quantities of marijuana will no longer have a criminal record, and smoking of the illegal drug would be de-criminalised under certain conditions.

According to Golding, Cabinet had approved the decision to amend the Dangerous Drugs Act to make a ticketable offence, the possession of two ounces (0.057 kilograms ) or less of marijuana. This means it will no longer be an arrestable offence, but one which will attract a fine, and will not give rise to a criminal record.

But in a statement, CMSL chairman, Andre Decaires, said he is concerned that Jamaica made its decision “unilaterally” and broke ranks with the rest of CARICOM.

Decaires said the Jamaican decision could be “a double-edged sword”, while at the same time sending a “good signal” to the rest of the region.

“Jamaica obviously sees the economics of decriminalising marijuana, and what it can signal to the rest of the Caribbean is that they too can break ranks and not make it a regional decision,” Decaires said.
The Medical Association of Jamaica (MAJ) has taken issue with the changes proposed by the government in relation to the possession and smoking of marijuana.

It has warned that the relaxation of the laws will lead to more usage and consequently more mental problems among the population.

The MAJ has since asked the Cabinet to reconsider its position in line with health practice and science.