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V1295 - Drug (Decriminalisation) Bill 2017 Watch

  • View Poll Results: Should this bill be passed into law?
    As many are of the opinion, Aye
    39.13%
    On the contrary, No
    34.78%
    Abstain
    26.09%

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    V1295 - Drug (Decriminalisation) Bill 2017, TSR Libertarian Party



    Drug (Decriminalisation) Bill 2017

    An Act to modernise and reform drug laws in order to allow adults in possession of a license for recreational use to purchase and consume most psychoactive substances; to distribute licenses for the production and trade of psychoactive substances; and to put in place safeguards and regulation for the use and trade of psychoactive substances.


    BE IT ENACTED by The Queen's most Excellent Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Commons in this present Parliament assembled, in accordance with the provisions of the Parliament Acts 1911 and 1949, and by the authority of the same, as follows:-

    1: Definitions

    (1) Psychoactive Substance: Anything which by stimulating or depressing the person’s central nervous system affects the person’s mental functioning or emotional state, but not including alcohol, tobacco or nicotine-based products, cannabis, caffeine, food and drink or medicinal products.

    2: Drug Classifications

    (1) The following substances shall be reclassified as Class A substances:

    • Synthetic cannabinoids (Spice, Black Mamba etc.)

    (2) The following substances shall be reclassified as Class B substances:

    • Cocaine
    • Lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD)
    • Methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA)
    • Psilocybin mushrooms (Magic mushrooms)
    • Dimethyltryptamine (DMT)

    (3) Class C shall be abolished and substances currently classified as Class C substances shall be reclassified as Class B substances.

    (4) This bill shall succeed the Psychoactive Substances Act 2016 and unclassified psychoactive substances (substances regulated under the Psychoactive Substances Act 2016) shall hereby be treated as Class B substances unless otherwise stated, and thus;

    (5) The Psychoactive Substances Act 2016 is hereby repealed.

    3: Regulation

    (1) Individuals found in possession of (or having used) a psychoactive substance without a license or prescription or a Class A substance without a prescription shall be required to undergo a process of rehabilitation as defined by the Home Office but not subject to a fine or custodial sentence; failure to meet the expectations of the court shall be met with no higher than a £50 fine per month.

    (2) Psychoactive Substance Licenses shall be issued on a “shall-issue” basis as long as the individual in question is 18 years of age or above and any individual or business supplying psychoactive substances is expected to request to see the license of the purchaser; any person in breach of this is liable to a fine of no higher than £5,000 which shall increase to a fine of no higher than £20,000 for repeat offenders.

    (3) A special Psychoactive Substance License shall need to be acquired by those who wish to produce psychoactive substances, and a Psychoactive Substance Quality Commission shall therefore be formed and regulated by the Home Office in order to inspect the production of psychoactive substances.

    (4) Psychoactive Substance Licenses shall be rescinded by court if an individual commits a crime involving or under the influence of a psychoactive substance, including knowingly supplying an individual without a license or being in possession of a Class A substance. The right to own a Psychoactive Substance License will be returned by court if there is no reason to doubt they will commit a crime involving psychoactive substances again.

    (5) Individuals will be able to apply for a license on a government-owned website under the URL www.druginformation.gov.uk. In addition, this website shall replace www.talktofrank.com and use its information about psychoactive substances, serving as a clear, truthful and educational guide.

    4: Supplying

    (1) It shall not be an offence to supply a Class B substance to another individual in possession of a license but it shall be the responsibility of the supplier to truthfully inform the customer of what they are purchasing and declare what they know.

    (2) It shall remain an offence to supply a Class A substance and individuals who are charged with supplying or intending to supply shall be liable to an unlimited fine and a custodial sentence of no more than 14 years.

    (3) This bill shall succeed the Hallucinogens Research Bill 2016, with the drugs moved to Class B substances under this bill, and thus;

    (4) The Hallucinogens Research Bill 2016 is hereby repealed.

    (5) Businesses who wish to supply psychoactive substances in visible establishments must be over 250 meters walking distance away from the nearest school.

    (6) Value Added Tax levied on psychoactive substances shall be pinned at the standard rate.

    (7) Section 4(2) of the Cannabis Legalisation Bill 2015 shall be amended to the following:

    “Value Added Tax levied on Cannabis shall be pinned at the standard rate.”

    5: Commencement, Short Title, Extent and Conditions

    (1) This bill may be cited as the Drug (Decriminalisation) Bill 2017.

    (2) This bill shall extend to the United Kingdom.

    (3) This bill shall come into force upon Royal Assent and individuals will be able to apply for a Psychoactive Substance License upon the creation of www.druginformation.gov.uk.

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    Notes

    The War on Drugs has consistently been lost. Despite prohibition, 8.4% of 16-59 year-olds have used an illegal substance - in the past year alone. Furthermore, a much higher percentage of people have used an illegal substance in their lifetime. A market cannot be eliminated by government regulation, yet it is still attempted. People who have done nothing to harm others but chosen to use illegal substances face the risk of being locked away from society and treated like a violent, dangerous criminal. It is those who lack opportunities and privilege that are disproportionately affected by this nation's unjust laws; criminal records hurting the chances of many working class individuals from achieving their dreams or merely improving their lives. The electorate agree - 86% of people do not want stricter laws enacted. Nonetheless, Parliament continues to ignore this issue even after Prince William called for a national conversation on the topic.

    In 2015, this house voted for the legalisation of cannabis. Finally, the most popular illegal substance that possesses little difference to alcohol was no longer a criminal offence to consume, following the example of many fellow European countries. So, why draw the line at this point? People will point out that other illegal substances are worse than cannabis. Whilst this might be true, it is evident that their negative effects are worsened by the conditions in which they are sold. LSD is an example of this: overdoses are rare and its naturally low risk is heightened by poisonous additives. Magic mushrooms, in addition, have a similar level of risk. Poor standards and a lack of information cause drugs that are still fundamentally positive for the large majority of users to be more risky, yet they remain illegal causing change to be impossible.

    As outlined in this article, many legal goods can also cause serious harm - including death. In the United States, 40 people a year die from skiing or snowboarding accidents; 800 from bicycle accidents; over 20,000 a year from pharmaceuticals; more than 30,000 a year from car accidents and at least 38,000 from alcohol. Regardless, they remain legal allowing people to understand the risks of the goods they purchase and allowing their respective industries to be regulated. Consequently, the same philosophy should be applied to drugs. They hold a low risk of accidents, yet they can provide satisfaction in the same manner the aforementioned goods do. Addiction is another, harmful side-effect. Would it be correct, in that case, to ban the trade of food. After all, it can cause health problems or even death in certain people! Of course, that sounds ludicrous. A drug addict needs help, not a criminal record, in order to live a better life. The overwhelming majority of people agree that this is the case with alcohol. Therefore, it is our suggestion that it is also the case with other drugs.

    This bill legalises and regulates the use and trade of a plethora of drugs, most notably: Speed, Codeine, Ketamine, Cocaine, MDMA, LSD, Magic Mushrooms and DMT. Cocaine is the most controversial of these drugs, yet it is used by 2.2% of 16-59 year-olds, making it the second most popular illegal substance. The case for its legalisation is much larger than for similarly addictive and harmful Class A substances, as it affects a surprisingly large amount of people and therefore it is massively essential that it is sold at a high standard. This will also serve effectively to reduce demand for damaging and unknown 'legal highs', by increasing demand for safer substances that people are more knowledgeable about. Whilst a larger proportion of the population will use drugs, this does not need to be an issue. Portugal, known for its decriminalisation of all drugs, has the second lowest overdose rate in the EU - and it is considerably lower than that of the United Kingdom.

    Similarly to Portugal's laws, this bill not only legalises less dangerous drugs but achieves the decriminalisation of all drugs - heroin or meth use will no longer be treated by time in the prison system and hindered work opportunities. Rather, upon the passing of this bill it will be treated with rehabilitation to ensure that people have the greatest possible chance of recovering to play a positive role in society. It does, however, ensure safeguards are in place. The class system remains and drugs classed as Class A (like the aforementioned two) will be strongly illegal to supply. A license system will be instituted to ensure that there is adequate control over the individuals who retain the right to use the drugs they wish to use, and that the right to use drugs is taken away where crime is present. Supplying Class B drugs is not a criminal offence, but its production must be undergone by those with special licenses, and those who produce Class B drugs will be regularly inspected. It is in conclusion that I appeal to all members of Parliament to vote in favour of this bill - it is an arm of compassion and extension of trust that is long overdue.

    Changes

    1. Formatting errors have been fixed.
    2. Synthetic cannabinoids have been reclassified as Class A substances.
    3. 3(2) has been changed so that the punishments outlined are equal to the current offences outlined for alcohol.
    4. A source for the information provided on www.druginformation.gov.uk has been outlined.
    5. The correct bills have now been repealed.



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    Eh I should be fairer, some of my issues were addressed. Rakas21 please change my vote from a Nay to an Abstain.
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    (Original post by CoffeeGeek)
    Eh I should be fairer, some of my issues were addressed. Rakas21 please change my vote from a Nay to an Abstain.
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    Abstain. The creation of a private market ultimately counters the purpose of decriminalisation: to reduce usage and third-party effects.
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    Abstain. Agree with a lot of the principles. Have issues with some of the details. Too complex to deal with in one piece of legislation in my view.

    Would suggest that the government review this topic within an SoI for a more comprehensive solution
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    Rakas21, please change my aye to an abstain.
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    A fair few harmful drugs would be decriminalised if this bill is allowed to pass such as cocaine, lysergic acid diethylamide and methylenedioxymethamphetamine.
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    (Original post by DMcGovern)
    Rakas21, please change my aye to an abstain.
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    (Original post by 04MR17)
    Abstain. Agree with a lot of the principles. Have issues with some of the details. Too complex to deal with in one piece of legislation in my view.

    Would suggest that the government review this topic within an SoI for a more comprehensive solution
    You do know that it would require a bill anyway?
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    (Original post by joecphillips)
    You do know that it would require a bill anyway?
    Of course. And more than one.
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    (Original post by 04MR17)
    Of course. And more than one.
    Why wait for two bills that will probably never be made if you agree with the principle of this bill?
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    (Original post by Saunders16)
    Why wait for two bills that will probably never be made if you agree with the principle of this bill?
    Because I'd rather have the existing legislation than this. This is not robust enough.
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    Rakas21 cranbrook_aspie Please change my vote to an aye.
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    (Original post by 04MR17)
    Because I'd rather have the existing legislation than this. This is not robust enough.
    So, your goal is to have a 'robust' policy, and you wish to achieve that by having nothing but cannabis legal in the hope that your government will actually bring out some legislation they have said nothing about and probably wouldn't bother with making even if they wanted to?

    Sure.
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    (Original post by Jammy Duel)
    Rakas21 cranbrook_aspie Please change my vote to an aye.
    Confirmed.
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    (Original post by Rakas21)
    Confirmed.
    Point of procedural information please: What happens to this if it remains like this?
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    (Original post by DreamlinerFinder)
    Point of procedural information please: What happens to this if it remains like this?
    There needs to be more ayes than nays for it to pass - so if it remained like this it wouldn't pass.
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    (Original post by CoffeeGeek)
    There needs to be more ayes than nays for it to pass - so if it remained like this it wouldn't pass.
    Good, because it shouldn't
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    (Original post by DreamlinerFinder)
    Point of procedural information please: What happens to this if it remains like this?
    It would be a fail were that the case.

    In this case i'll have a validated result for you in the next few minutes since it's a close one.
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    (Original post by Rakas21)
    It would be a fail were that the case.

    In this case i'll have a validated result for you in the next few minutes since it's a close one.
    Thanks
 
 
 
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