09 Dec 2016

The UK’s First Licensed Cannabis Dispensary.

When Mike Dobson first called me a few months ago and told me he had an idea for gaining legal access to cannabis in the UK, I was, of course, sceptical. CLEAR has frequently been approached with hare-brained and convoluted plans for avoiding the law that prohibits cannabis.  Without exception they have all been bonkers. Within a few minutes though, I could see this one was different.  In the past, most of these ideas have been around sidestepping the...

17 Nov 2016

Cruel And Irresponsible Response from UK Government To Parliamentary Report On Medicinal Cannabis.

Unsurprisingly perhaps, the response to the recent call from MPs and peers to legalise cannabis for medicinal use has come straight from the top.  Theresa May's longstanding reputation as a denier of science and evidence on drugs policy is reinforced by her peremptory dismissal of the expert report.  It seems that, at least in the short term, the UK government is sticking by a policy that is discredited, ridiculous and deeply cruel. It fell to Sarah Newton MP, minister of state...

15 Oct 2016

The British Medical Journal (BMJ) Features The CLEAR Medicinal Cannabis Campaign.

“Muddled thinking” over cannabis leaves patients in limbo, warn campaigners BMJ 2016; 355 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.i5556 (Published 14 October 2016) Cite this as: BMJ 2016;355:i5556 Download PDF here Companies selling cannabis based products have been told to remove them from the market within 28 days, after a review by the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) determined that they were medicinal products. Campaigners for cannabis law reform welcomed the recognition that cannabidiol (CBD) had medicinal properties but warned that...

12 Oct 2016

The Man From The MHRA. Endangering Public Health With Precipitate Action On CBD.

The Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) apparent decision to designate cannabidiol (CBD) as a medicine is an unholy mess and has been handled about as badly as it is possible for a government agency to deal with a matter of public safety. The desk of Dr Ian Hudson, the Chief Executive, will shortly be groaning under the weight of correspondence from MPs asking him to explain exactly what is going on.  We know that...

05 Oct 2016

Fast Developing News On CBD And Medicinal Cannabis.

We learned today that the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) has started issuing letters to CBD suppliers advising them that CBD is being designated as a medicine and that sale of CBD products must stop within 28 days. This will be alarming news to many people.  However, it is a complex situation which has some positive aspects to it.  In the short term, if you are already using CBD products, you would be well advised to stock up as much as you...

17 Sep 2016

CLEAR’s Submission To The Parliamentary Inquiry Into Medicinal Cannabis.

This was the response that CLEAR submitted to the APPG in February 2016.  In March 2016, Roland Gyallay-Pap, then managing director of CLEAR and Peter Reynolds, president, were called to give oral evidence to the Inquiry. A PDF copy of this document may be downloaded here. A copy of the Powerpoint presentation delivered by CLEAR at the oral evidence hearing can be downloaded here.   Introduction In June 2015 the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Drug Policy Reform (APPG) published a short report arguing for a rescheduling of...

15 Sep 2016

Chip Somers, Drug Therapist Charlatan. Ignorant? A Liar? Or Both?

It takes a lot to get me angry these days about attitudes towards cannabis.  Many people are simply misinformed and are themselves victims of a relentless propaganda campaign by governments and the gutter press.  Today though I watched the Victoria Derbyshire show on catch up from last Tuesday, the day that Parliament published published its report on medicinal cannabis.  In the studio were CLEAR member Lara Smith, UPA member Faye Adams and Chip Somers, described as a 'government advisor', was on Skype from his home...

08 Sep 2016

CLEAR Member Lara Smith To Be ‘Star Patient’ In Parliamentary Report On Medicinal Cannabis.

The launch of the APPG report on its inquiry into medicinal cannabis is a public event which anyone can attend.  It takes place at the House of Lords committee room 2 on 13th September 2016 at 11.00am. Baroness Molly Meacher and Caroline Lucas MP, are co-chairs of the APPG.  The guest speakers will be: Frank Field MP Ron Hogg, Police and Crime Commissioner for...

29 Aug 2016

Home Secretary Invites CLEAR To ‘Enter A Dialogue’ On Cannabis Law Reform.

In a letter dated 15th August 2016, Amber Rudd, the new Home Secretary, has invited CLEAR to raise "any queries and concerns" about present UK policy on cannabis. This is the first time since 2006, with Charles Clarke, that the UK cannabis campaign has had any direct contact with a serving Home Secretary.  It reflects the reality, now recognised in government, that changes in cannabis policy are imminent. In...

16 Jul 2016

May Brings A Fresh Start To The Cannabis Campaign.

Would that we were in spring looking forward to a splendid summer. Instead, in mid-July we are heading into autumn towards what looks like a stern, drab and ominous future.   Theresa May is prime minister, perhaps the worst nightmare for those who seek cannabis law reform. You have to admire her first few days though. What you see is what you get. She is smart, calculated and very, very certain about the nature of the government she will lead.  I have no doubt she...