THC - Cannabis - Ministry :: Community Forum Index
UK: Expert advisers threaten revolt against Clarke

Post new topic   Reply to topic    THC - Cannabis - Ministry :: Community Forum Index -> Legislation
View previous topic :: View next topic  
Author Message
Cannabis Sacrament Minister.
Cannabis Sacrament Minister.

Joined: 14 Apr 2003
Posts: 7140
Location: Amsterdam

PostPosted: Sat Jan 14, 2006 9:23 pm    Post subject: UK: Expert advisers threaten revolt against Clarke Reply with quote

Expert advisers threaten revolt against Clarke

· Reclassification 'would be playing to gallery'
· Authors of secret report threaten resignation

James Randerson, science correspondent
Saturday January 14, 2006
The Guardian

Members of a top drug advisory panel who wrote a secret report to the home secretary on cannabis may resign if the government reclassifies the drug to class B, the Guardian has learned.
They are concerned that Charles Clarke is considering upgrading cannabis and say this would be in direct contradiction to the findings of their unpublished report. They say such a move would set a "damaging precedent", and that their report - which the Guardian has seen - explicitly rules out reclassification.

Lord Victor Adebowale, director of the drug treatment charity Turning Point and member of the Advisory Council on Misuse of Drugs (ACMD), said: "I am increasingly concerned about the politicisation of this - the playing to the gallery." He said it would be "very serious" for the home secretary to ignore the council's advice.
"This wasn't a group of long-haired ex-cannabis smokers. These are some of the best pharmacologists in the country with worldwide reputations," he said. "He's basically saying he's got no confidence in their opinion."

In recommending that the drug remain at class C, the report says: "The council does not advise that the classification of cannabis-containing products should be changed on the basis of the result of recent research into the effects on the development of psychoses. Although it is unquestionably harmful, its harmfulness does not equate to that of other class B substances both at the level of the individual or society."

It recommends maintaining the status quo for three reasons: the risk of developing mental illness from smoking cannabis is very small; the harm caused by the drug is substantially less than other class B substances, such as amphetamines; and reclassification has not resulted in an increase in use by adolescents and young adults.

Last week, Mr Clarke hinted that he was considering a U-turn. "The thing that worries me most [about the downgrading of cannabis] is confusion among the punters about what the legal status of cannabis is," he told the Times. "I'm very struck by the advocacy of a number of people who have been proposers of the reclassification of cannabis that they were wrong."

Leslie King, a member of the ACMD's technical committee and former head of the Forensic Science Service's drugs intelligence unit, said that if the home secretary ignored the panel's advice, it would have "considerable ramifications" for the ACMD's credibility. Professor Leslie Iversen, a pharmacologist at Oxford University and ACMD member, said that if Mr Clarke ignored the committee's advice it would set an "unfortunate precedent".

Asked whether council members might consider resigning he said: "I can't speak for my colleagues, but I would think quite carefully about whether it is worth devoting a lot of effort and time to this type of exercise if your advice is going to be ignored."

Another ACMD member, Martin Barnes, chief executive of Drugscope, agreed that resignations might follow. "Our view is that if the government chooses not to follow the advisory council's recommendation they've got to really have pretty compelling reasons not to.",11026,1686316,00.html


I hereby declare Peace on war!
█ Please read the Board Rules and Posting, and you
Radio Free Amsterdam
People who know truth, speak truth.
Those who don't, quote scriptures.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website
Display posts from previous:   
Post new topic   Reply to topic    THC - Cannabis - Ministry :: Community Forum Index -> Legislation All times are GMT + 1 Hour
Page 1 of 1

Jump to:  
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum
Public forum Public Forum Members only Members only forum Members Group Members Group

THC-Light skin designed for Amsterdam Cannabis Ministry by JuggoPop
phpBB Group | THC Ministry Members | Cannabis Religion | Sacrament | Forum html archives | Site Map | RSS Feed | phpbb HTML Archiver - Created by and released by