Davey: Government must look at evidence on medicinal use of cannabis
By The Voice in Liberal Democrat Voice
Originally published by Rutland and South Lincolnshire Liberal Democrats
The Government's refusal to grant a licence for the medicinal use of cannabis to 6 year old Alfie Dingley has been in the news this week. His mother says that when he was given the drug in the Netherlands, under the supervision of paediatricians there, his Epilepsy improved.
Ed Davey called on the Government to look at the evidence and listening to those who know what they are talking about.
The government's refusal to consider allowing the use of cannabis for medicinal purpose is criminalising people who simply need to alleviate chronic pain.
A growing number of our European neighbours and other countries around the world now recognise the benefits of medicinal cannabis.
The government must put aside their preconceptions on this issue, and instead start looking at the evidence and listening to the views of patients and experts.
This afternoon, Ed was able to extract a promise from the Minster to meet campaign groups:
- The whole House will welcome the fact that the Minister has agreed to meet the family of Alfie Dingley. Will he also agree to meet the campaign group, End Our Pain, which is campaigning to allow doctors to prescribe cannabis when it would help their patients? End Our Pain wants to present to the Minister the evidence that honourable colleagues have talked about and discuss the fact that the Multiple Sclerosis Society has changed its position on the use of medicinal cannabis, based on the evidence.
The Minister replied:
- I am certainly happy to meet that group, or a more appropriate Minister could, so the answer is yes.
Christine Jardine highlighted differences between what the Tories are saying north and south of the border:
- The Minister has heard support from those of us on these Benches, but does he not support the views of his colleagues in the Scottish Parliament, where the health spokesman Miles Briggs said:
"it is time for a comprehensive, UK wide review…and for Parliament to look to reform access to cannabis for medical and scientific purposes"?
Does he recognise that there is widespread support in all parties?