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Green light of Parliament to regulate cannabis associations

Updated on July 27, 2016

The Parliament gave the green light Wednesday to the Popular Legislative Initiative (ILP) on the regulation of cannabis associations. The proposed citizens' law, which entered the chamber supported with more than 57,000 signatures, provides provide legal certainty to the 400 clubs in Catalonia, regulating the cultivation, transportation and consumption of cannabis. All parliamentary groups have voted against an amendment to the entire PP, so the ILP will continue regular processing in the Parliament: we will work on commission and a final proposal will have to be voted on will be discussed again in plenary .

The defender of the initiative, the former mayor of Rasquera (Tarragona), Bernat Pellisa, argued that the proposal calls for "a legal framework and legal recognition" for all associations that now pass in limbo. "In 70 years of prohibition has not been able to reduce the number of consumers or end the mafias. Or we regulate this or give carte blanche to the mafias," said Pellisa, which also decided to take advantage of the standard to "investigate the effects noxious and harmful "cannabis safely.

"This law is intended to clearly establish the pattern of activity of associations of people who consume cannabis, the general rules for its establishment, organization and functioning of these associations and their clubs," reads the first article of the standard. The proposal highlights the need to protect public health "through a policy of harm reduction" and "harmonize" the rights of consumers with the rest of the population. The ILP also provides a log book should develop "a program of private self-supply" and also has to be monitored and controlled both cultivation and transport, "the product will be packaged and sealed so that to ensure integrity in the process, "said the proposal. Furthermore, it should be of age, being a consumer and have a guarantee of another partner to enter a club.

But the proposal has run into a snag just inside the doors of the House. "We are talking about legalizing an activity whose consumption is forbidden," he settled the popular deputy Alberto Villagrasa to defend his amendment. The parliamentarian demanded not "trivialize" the cannabis consumption compared with snuff and alcohol, substances against carried out restrictive policies and whose consumption is falling, he said. In addition, Villagrasa criticized want to regulate cannabis in Parliament, when that is, in his opinion, state competition. "If they want to raise this proposal seriously, they will have to go to Congress of Deputies, because this bill strikes the criminal code. They are starting the cart before the horse, making noise. This is illegal," he said.

The other parliamentary groups, however, argued that the restrictive policies no longer work and recognized that the associations are in a legal limbo. "This is not legalization of the substance, but regular partnerships. A high level responsible for reasons of legal certainty discussion is necessary," he said Naomi Street, deputy Ciutadans. The CUP criticized the "hypocrisy around the issue" and both CSQEP as the PSC recalled that "the ban will not end the problem." Even Convergence, now on the block Junts Pel Yes, voted for the proposal follow the parliamentary process. Republican Alba Verg├Ęs, who spoke on behalf of the group, said that current policies have not met the targets, "many trials and few benefits," he said.

The ILP is left now a long way, as will be discussed in committee. Although he voted to discuss, Junts Pel Yes and moved that "is very controversial points" that will have to try and solve for the rule to succeed.

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