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Mayhem Erupts at Melbourne Cannabis Rally as Police Haul Off Patients

The annual 420 Rally & Neighborhood Picnic at Flagstaff Gardens in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia led to catastrophe on April 20, when regulation enforcement sabotaged the occasion and hauled peaceable sufferers off whereas ignoring the medical hashish regulation.

The Australian parliament amended the Narcotics Drug Act in 2016 to permit medical hashish. In Victoria, docs and nurse practitioners can prescribe medical hashish, however sure merchandise want approval from the Commonwealth Therapeutic Items Administration (TGA).

The 420 occasions there at the moment are a mixture of celebration and a name to motion. Jason, aka “Historic Jay” organizes the 420 Rally & Neighborhood Picnic every year. Historic Jay says this didn’t deter police from arresting folks smoking peacefully on the rally.

“A pre-planned assault on a few of Victoria’s most susceptible members of the neighborhood, the police intimidated and illegally searched nearly everybody passing via the park together with a most cancers affected person recovering from current mind surgical procedure,” Historic Jay instructed Power Information.

Courtesy of Platform 2 Melbourne

“I used to be approached by one aged gentleman who had been strip searched in plain view of everybody regardless of not having any hashish or illicit substances, the humiliation he felt was seen within the tear rolling from the nook of his eye.”

Historic Jay is a drug reform advocate, host of Historic Jay’s Argo Nights, and has used hashish for medical functions for over 30 years.

British tabloid Each day Mail profiled one explicit incident wherein a number of officers dragged a person and ignored his pleas that he held a prescription for medical hashish. The person was handcuffed and dragged away. He additionally mentioned he obtained his hashish legally from a pharmacy. The person instructed reporters that he assumed he’d have time for what was his first time on the occasion with authorized medical hashish.

A Victoria Police spokesman mentioned police had been on-site at Flagstaff Gardens on Wednesday for the protest, and that the person was launched later—however after first being arrested, handcuffed, and hauled away. It’s not the form of freedom advocates envisioned with legalized medical hashish within the state.

A blogger from Platform 2 Melbourne was on the rally, and determined to report and submit it on YouTube, contemplating the character of the occasion, regardless of a DJ taking part in music within the background.

Police aggression might be plainly seen on the video, and commenters referred to as the police “uniformed thugs,” “cowards,” and different names.

A part of the issue is accessibility for medical sufferers. “Regardless of the legality and availability of prescription hashish the current legal guidelines create a scenario that enables sufferers rights to be ignored,” Historic Jay mentioned.

The actions of police sign that they aren’t observing the state’s just lately applied medical hashish regulation.

“The aggressive strategy by police in the direction of the 420 Rally signifies a complete lack of awareness or empathy in the direction of these susceptible members of the neighborhood and an intimidation centered strategy in the direction of regulation reform campaigners.”

Psychedelic artist TROG relies in Victoria, and has many connections with the hashish neighborhood there. He was additionally impacted by the course of occasions on the rally.

“It’s 2022, each human is aware of hashish isn’t dangerous, incidents like this shouldn’t occur, it’s incorrect,” TROG instructed Power Information.

Round half of Australians say that hashish must be legalized. Based on a survey in 2019, 41.1% of Australians imagine hashish must be legalized within the nation—a big soar in approval rankings in comparison with 2013 after they had been requested the identical query. In an internet survey, carried out by polling firm Important Analysis between March 30 and April 2 of 2022, 50% of respondents mentioned that they had been in favor of full hashish reform.