Medical marijuana legalisation 'closer'

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Medical marijuana legalisation 'closer'

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" ... 1u7z8.html - November 26, 2014 - 12:06PM - Amy Remeikis

Medical marijuana legalisation 'closer'

Many Australians already use cannabis medicinally, albeit illegally, especially for chronic pain. Photo: Max Mason-Hubers

The legalisation of medical marijuana is creeping closer – albeit "cautiously".

Queensland Coalition Senator Ian Macdonald said he would co-sponsor the Regulator of Medical Cannabis Bill when it is introduced to the federal Senate on Thursday, but indicated he would not automatically support every part of the bill.

Produced by the Commonwealth Parliamentary Group for Drug Policy and Law Reform, the bill seeks to introduce medical cannabis trials.

Senator Macdonald said he believed attitudes were changing and the time was right to debate the issue.

"If I am to properly represent the people of Queensland, and the members of my party, then I need to promote robust debate on this issue," he said in a statement.

The LNP state conference, held in Townsville over the weekend, passed two motions in support of medical marijuana trials, one calling for the party to support the "Commonwealth Multi-party Group's Bill to allow medical trials for the use of cannabis oil in the treatment of illness" while the other called for Queensland trials to begin.

Premier Campbell Newman has repeatedly said he was "sympathetic" to the issue, but he believed the question on whether it should be legalised for medical treatment was best answered by the National Health and Medical Research Council.

New South Wales has taken carriage of a national clinical trial which the Australian Capital Territory is considering joining.

Victoria is also considering legislation which would allow for trials in that state."

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