BE presents bill to decriminalize recreational cannabis consumption

Cannabis is the most consumed illicit substance in Portugal

The Left Bloc today proposed the decriminalization of recreational cannabis use, arguing that it is a matter of public health and safety, and called for a debate in parliament that would allow “arriving at a good law”.

The parliamentary leader of the Left Bloc, Fabian Figueiredo, presented today, in the Assembly of the Republic, a bill “on the possession, cultivation and consumption of cannabis for non-medical purposes”, based on the German model, which “complies with all treaties international institutions, to which Germany and the Portuguese State are linked.

“The model that is in force in Germany, but which is very similar to the one in force in Malta, gives us the guarantee that, if a similar law is approved in Portugal, it can come into force without any further problems”, he said. Fabian Figueiredo at a press conference.

The proposed model consists of the creation of cultivation associations, with a maximum of 500 members, who can each dispense up to 25 grams of cannabis per day and 50 grams per month, also allowing self-cultivation at home, up to three plants, “just for personal consumption.”

From the age of 18, people can have up to 25 grams of cannabis in their possession for personal consumption.

BE also proposes the development of pilot projects in conjunction with local authorities that allow the dispensation of cannabis through commercial channels.

“It is a model that works, which has been highly scrutinized, and to which Portugal must look” and be inspired to take “a step forward” and complete its drug policy.

The leader of the parliamentary group explained that cannabis is the most consumed illicit substance in Portugal, with 12,2% of the population using it throughout their lives.

“Making this substance, which is part of the consumption habits of Portuguese society, continue to be controlled by those who have no concern for public health, continue to finance the clandestine market, continue to depend on criminal networks is a mistake”, considered.

He also warned of the growing number of “psychotic cases” in Portugal due to cannabis consumption, as the substance is not controlled.

For these reasons, Fabian Figueiredo argued that legalizing cannabis “is a public health issue, but it is also a safety issue”.

“Portugal must look at the various countries that have legalized cannabis and look at the conclusions of this legalization process in Canada, Uruguay, Malta, Germany, in 24 states in the United States, where the results are positive, it has reduced crime , increased safety and, in several cases, also reduced consumption”, he argued.

For the parliamentary leader, it is necessary to ensure that Portugal takes “sensible and safe measures” and, therefore, he proposed that “there should be a debate in Portugal, in the Assembly of the Republic, that will allow us to reach a good law”.

He appealed to the parties, starting with those belonging to the “political families” that in Germany took “this important step”, from the left, from the Socialist Party, from the liberals, from the Greens, from Livre and from PAN, “but also to all the voices who in the Social Democratic Party understand that what is responsible, safe and right is to move forward with a model of cannabis legalization that respects international treaties and European Union rules”.

“Portugal is much better served, as other countries are, if the State dictates the rules under which this substance is consumed. It’s not because cannabis is illegal that people will stop consuming it, quite the opposite,” he declared.

On Saturday, the “Marches for Cannabis 2024” will take place in Lisbon and Porto, initiatives for the defense and full legalization of the plant, of all its uses (recreational, medicinal and industrial).