The Cannabis Council of SA has a strong desire to engage with and work alongside all who have a stake in achieving progressive Cannabis and Hemp law reform in South Australia.
Public conversation is at the centre of this.
It is my privilege to be a member of the Council and it is my pleasure to be here today.
CCSA is apolitical and managed by local leaders in their fields.
The team are a group of knowledgeable and focussed people with skills in all areas of Cannabis law reform, from seed to home, the legal perspective and more.
Today, rather than share my personal views, I am going to quote from Political Leaders, Medical Specialists and importantly a mother who knows more than anyone, what it is like to love and to loose and to feel loss at that most primal level.
These extracts have been taken from the program for the 2016 United in Compassion Medical Cannabis Symposium to be held in Sydney, May 14-15.
The philosophy of UIC is "The dignified alleviation of suffering with compassion and empathy"
I give you the first quote. These words are from UIC’sExecutive Director & Chairwoman Lucy Haslam:
“My first experience with Medical Cannabis was when my husband and I encouraged our 23 year old son to smoke a Cannabis joint.”
We were not being irresponsible parents......we were desperate parents who had struggled to watch our son suffer needlessly through years of gruelling chemotherapy. His battle with cancer had led him to a very dark place where constant nausea and vomiting was stripping away any quality of life he had left. Medical Cannabis was a last resort and it was miraculous!
I would have to agree with Lucy.
The Honourable Mike Baird MP, Premier of NSW will be opening the Symposium and he has said "Every step we take on medical Cannabis will be built on the footsteps Dan Haslam left behind” Thank you Mike.
Medical Cannabis is a major Quality Of Life changer for paediatric epileptic patients and their families!' Dr Ilan Linder MD, Paediatric Neurologist, Israel Wolfson Medical Centre
We warmly welcome Robyn Wakefield from The Epilepsy Centre of SA here today.
"Cannabis, the medicinal plant, has led us to a deeper understanding of the Endocannabinoid System, a key regulatory homeostatic mechanism in human physiology that will lead to better treatments of many diseases." Dr Ethan Russo MD - USA
"Cannabis is first and foremost a herbal medicine...a plant of incredible scope and complexity...one that has been used by our ancestors, from a diverse range of cultures, for millennia.
A plant that can not only alleviate pain and suffering, but restore health and homeostasis.
We now have an opportunity to reinstate this therapeutic plant to our pharmacopoeias, dispel the inaccuracies that surround it and use the best of cutting edge science to ensure its quality, safety and efficacy for those that are in genuine need. Make no mistake...Cannabis is not experiencing a renaissance...it has not been rediscovered...it is simply returning to its rightful place."
Justin Sinclair - Herbalist, Pharmacognosist & Educator
"The pre-clinical (and in some cases clinical) research demonstrating that Cannabis has a wide therapeutic potential is enormous and scientifically very solid.
At this point, combined efforts from basic researchers, clinicians, big or small pharmaceutical companies and legislators, should be made to transfer this knowledge from the labs to the clinics.
There is no reason to make patients wait any longer."
Professor Cristina Sánchez - Complutense University Madrid, Spain
"The issue regarding medicinal Cannabis is simply one of compassion"
Associate Professor Dr David Caldicott Consultant Emergency Physician, Calvary Hospital, Canberra
"Medical access to Cannabis is a human and biological right" Alice O’Leary-Randall, B.A., L.P.N Member, Board of Directors, American Cannabis Nurses Association, Member, Board of Directors, Mary’s Foundation of Caring
'For at least 5000 years our ancestors used Cannabis for many things including medicine. It was only around 80 years ago that our perception of this plant was changed to one of fear, mistrust and moral outrage.
But today, we stand under the weight of mounting medical and scientific evidence, that our bias against Cannabis has been unjustified and unnecessary.
We are only just beginning to discover the secrets behind why humans used this amazing plant successfully for so long. It is through our love and compassion that we can let go of our fears and our prejudice and give hope and dignity to those who are suffering.' Tim Harding, Symposium Host
I invite each and every one of you to be part of the Symposium and if you can’t be there in person the events of will be streamed live.
In parallel with this event is the Hemp Health and Innovation Expo. Attendees will gain valuable information and awareness of the amazing benefits the Hemp plant has to offer now and into the future. Learn how to grow your own produce, fresh and free of chemicals, even where space is limited. Discover new and innovative products.
The final comment is mine: Science tells us we can relieve the suffering of the chronically ill and the terminally ill with Cannabis and that Hemp is an amazing food, fibre and fuel.
By legislating to make Cannabis legal we can ‘harvest’ or ‘reap’ vast rewards. It has only been in recent times that the plant has been demonised and prohibited. For centuries the plant has served humanity well.
Personally I believe the possibilities are endless.
What are we waiting South Australia?