Closed petition Hold a referendum for the legalisation of cannabis

It is clear that the cannabis debate is not going away and given that the current conservative government understand the meaning of democracy by giving a referendum to the public on our membership of the E.U it should give the public a referendum on cannabis legalisation and let the public decide

This petition is closed All petitions run for 6 months

29,775 signatures

Show on a map

100,000

Government responded

This response was given on 30 April 2018

This Government has no plans to legalise cannabis and there are no plans to hold a referendum on the matter.

Cannabis is a Class B Drug under the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971. There is a substantial body of scientific and medical evidence to show that controlled drugs, such as cannabis, are harmful and can damage people’s mental and physical health, and our wider communities.

The evidence from the Government’s independent experts, the Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs (‘ACMD’), is that the use of cannabis is a “significant public health issue and can unquestionably cause harm to individuals and society”. The ACMD’s most recent advice on cannabis is set out in its 2008 report:
https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/acmd-cannabis-classification-and-public-health-2008

Given these acknowledged harms, the Government does not consider it appropriate to hold a referendum on the legalisation of cannabis. Whilst the debate is an important one, the eleven previous referenda have centred on fundamental constitutional issues such as devolution and the UK’s membership of the EU.

The legalisation of cannabis would send the wrong message to the vast majority of people who do not take drugs, especially young and vulnerable people, with the potential grave risk of increased misuse of drugs. It would not eliminate the crime committed by the illicit trade, nor would it address the harms associated with drug dependence and the misery this can cause to families and society. As such, the Government’s position on Cannabis remaining a controlled drug remains clear and there is no intention to hold a referendum on the matter.

Home Office

Other parliamentary business

MPs ask Government for a clearer response on petition about referendum on cannabis

The Government’s response to this petition has changed. This change was made on 12 June 2018.

This is because the Petitions Committee (the group of MPs who oversee the petitions system) did not think that the Government’s first response was satisfactory, because it did not address directly the petition’s specific request for a referendum on the legalisation of cannabis.

The Committee wrote to the Government to ask for a new response which answered the petition more directly.

The Government has produced a new response which is published here:https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/214030

The new response reads as follows:
This Government has no plans to legalise cannabis and there are no plans to hold a referendum on the matter.

Cannabis is a Class B Drug under the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971. There is a substantial body of scientific and medical evidence to show that controlled drugs, such as cannabis, are harmful and can damage people’s mental and physical health, and our wider communities.

The evidence from the Government’s independent experts, the Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs (‘ACMD’), is that the use of cannabis is a “significant public health issue and can unquestionably cause harm to individuals and society”. The ACMD’s most recent advice on cannabis is set out in its 2008 report:
https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/acmd-cannabis-classification-and-public-health-2008
Given these acknowledged harms, the Government does not consider it appropriate to hold a referendum on the legalisation of cannabis. Whilst the debate is an important one, the eleven previous referenda have centred on fundamental constitutional issues such as devolution and the UK’s membership of the EU.
The legalisation of cannabis would send the wrong message to the vast majority of people who do not take drugs, especially young and vulnerable people, with the potential grave risk of increased misuse of drugs. It would not eliminate the crime committed by the illicit trade, nor would it address the harms associated with drug dependence and the misery this can cause to families and society. As such, the Government’s position on Cannabis remaining a controlled drug remains clear and there is no intention to hold a referendum on the matter.

The previous response, which has now been replaced, was as follows:
This Government has no plans to legalise cannabis.

Cannabis is a Class B Drug under the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971. There is a substantial body of scientific and medical evidence to show that controlled drugs, such as cannabis, are harmful and can damage people’s mental and physical health, and our wider communities.

The evidence from the Government’s independent experts, the Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs (‘ACMD’), is that the use of cannabis is a “significant public health issue and can unquestionably cause harm to individuals and society”. The ACMD’s most recent advice on cannabis is set out in its 2008 report:
https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/acmd-cannabis-classification-and-public-health-2008

The legalisation of cannabis would send the wrong message to the vast majority of people who do not take drugs, especially young and vulnerable people, with the potential grave risk of increased misuse of drugs. It would not eliminate the crime committed by the illicit trade, nor would it address the harms associated with drug dependence and the misery this can cause to families and society.