Astrid’s Stance on Legalising Cannabis in Australia

Australia is currently navigating the complexities of legalising and decriminalising cannabis. We are encouraged by this shift and advocate for public health to be a central focus in these discussions.

The following blog discusses Astrid’s submission on the Legalising Cannabis Bill 2023

At Astrid, we are dedicated to exceptional patient care with a focus on education, support, compliance, advocacy, and transparency.

As a company that is primarily led by pharmacists, we value patient safety in both the medical and adult use of cannabis frameworks.

Read more below about Astrid’s stance on the Legalising Cannabis Bill 2023. 

The Evolving Attitude towards Legalisation of Cannabis in Australia

Australia is witnessing diverse approaches to the legalisation and decriminalisation of cannabis. We view this trend positively, emphasising the paramount importance of public health in all discussions related to cannabis legalisation in our country. This is positive and public health promotion should be at the heart of all discussions around the legalisation of cannabis in Australia. 

There is an increased use of cannabis and widespread public support for changing legislation to permit the use of cannabis. Recent trends show a significant increase in cannabis use and public support for legislative changes. A new survey showed that 50% of Australians support the legalisation of growing plants at home (Vice and YouGov).

Between 2016 and 2019, both lifetime and recent cannabis use increased significantly. In 2019, 36% of Australians (7.6 million people) had used it in their lifetime, and 11.6% had used it in the last 12 months, up from 10.4% (Aus Gov). 

Astrid Dispensary recognises the evolving perspective of the Australian community on cannabis. Our commitment lies in establishing a framework that enhances public safety amidst these changing attitudes.

Legalising Cannabis Bill 2023

Astrid’s Key Three Recommendations for the Legalising Cannabis Bill

1. Labelling and Regulation 

We agree with the creation of a Cannabis Australian National Agency (CANA) that will determine the packaging, labelling and storage requirements for cannabis products. Reasonable steps must be considered for licence holders who are manufacturing products, ie. surveillance, security measures and records management.

We seek further clarity within the Bill and the role of CANA in regulating cannabis products. 

2. Guidelines for Patient Safety in Products 

Further to the manufacturing of cannabis products, we seek clarity around the supply of cannabis products. We strongly urge for the Government to establish guidelines around the supply of cannabis (ie. monthly limits, and incorporate potency levels for THC), to ensure patient safety. 

3. Responsible Service Rules

In reference to Clause 29 and conditions for licences – general, and the Responsible Service of Cannabis, we urge for clarity around the rules of “Responsible Service of Cannabis.” 

Training should be mandatory for any personnel that is selling and/or providing information on cannabis within an adult use framework. 

Astrid Dispensary and Clinic is dedicating to supporting patients with medicinal cannabis in Australia

Five Further Recommendations from Astrid

Public Health Education

We encourage the consideration of a public health promotion campaign funded by the Federal Government so that the general public is informed and educated on the potential health risks and consequences associated with the use of cannabis, particularly young people. 

Advisory Committee

Other than the establishment of CANA, we strongly encourage the Government to consider an Advisory Committee that will provide advice on the development of the Bill and plan to allow an adult use framework in Australia. 

Drug Driving Laws

We recommend for drug driving laws to be amended across all states and territories and to ensure that best measures are considered with a standard of measuring impairment from cannabis.

Health Services Support 

We ask for the Federal Government to ensure that access to health and social services are improved to address any issues associated with cannabis use. It’s crucial to have access to reliable resources and support services for individuals dealing with challenges related to their usage. 

Controls for Products 

We recommend for controls to be put in place around the potency and content of cannabis products. We want to ensure all products are safe for patients and limits are controlled.  

Looking to the future: Legalising Cannabis Bill 2023

Astrid sees the Legalising Cannabis Bill 2023 as a progressive step forward in drug law reform for Australia, in allowing adult personal use of cannabis. This shift provides opportunities for job creation, fostering a strong local industry, and reducing the prevalence of the illicit market. 

At Astrid, we strongly support an adult cannabis framework prioritising safety, harm reduction, and consumer health. 

Everything we do at Astrid, we do it with our patient’s care in mind. 

Questions about Astrid or natural medicines? Contact us or visit our dispensaries for dedicated care and assistance.