After a protracted debate about which types of drugs, light or heavy, can be attributed to marijuana, the Italian authorities finally decided. Yesterday was a decree to repeal the so-called Fini-Giovanardi Act, which ranked marijuana as substances such as heroin, cocaine and amphetamine, which are essentially hard drugs.
The possession of drugs is strictly punishable by local laws. So, in accordance with the decree just adopted, if previously possession of hard drugs, which included hemp, provided for imprisonment of 8 to 20 years, now you can go to jail for 2-6 years for storing this substance.
As the Minister of Health of Italy, Beatrice Lorenzin, explained, the decision to include marijuana in the list of soft drugs was dictated by the fact that the Fini-Giovanardi law, adopted in 2006, was declared unconstitutional, since it did not indicate the types of hazardous substances, appeared in recent years. In accordance with the new norms, marijuana will be taken out in a separate section, where all preparations made on its basis will be listed.
It is worth noting that in February the Italian Constitutional Court equated hashish with hard drugs.
Many politicians supported this decision, while most organizations and activists expressed their negative attitude towards it. So, for example, representatives Social Marijuana ClubA advocate for the use of this substance for medical purposes since January 2013, stated that they are categorically against the decision. “According to the previous law of 2006, which can be considered one of the most absurd in the world, ordinary people suffering from various diseases were called criminals,” explains the founders of the club Andrea Trasciuoglio, Lucia Spiri and William Verardi (William Verardi).
A law passed in 2007 allowed physicians to prescribe marijuana as a medicine. However, not all regions of the country provided patients with prescriptions for this substance for free. In many areas of Italy, hemp was used for medical purposes. about 40 euros per gram. But this did not mean at all that every patient could acquire the substance: the doctors wrote the prescription for marijuana solely at their discretion. “Often the doctors were misinformed,” Verardi recalls. “They preferred to prescribe drugs like opium, which have a number of dangerous side effects.”
Trachuoglio and Spiri, who themselves suffer from multiple sclerosis, said that they were lucky to find doctors who prescribed the necessary doses of marijuana. Now they hope to convince other doctors not to refuse to give prescriptions for this substance.
“We will continue to convince doctors and patients about the benefits of using drugs that contain marijuana,” says Spiri. “With the help of universities and institutes, we hope to find a place where we are allowed to legally grow this substance exclusively for medical purposes, instead of purchasing it outside the country for fabulous amounts.”
According to Verardi, marijuana is very useful in treating not only multiple sclerosis, but also many other diseases, such as chronic pain, nausea, Parkinson's and Alzheimer's disease, without causing dangerous reactions to the product in patients. So, Spiri and Trashuillo tried in vain to use other drugs that would help them in the treatment of their disease. “The drugs we used before were expressed only in side effects,” Spiri recalls. “It all ended up in the fact that I ended up in a wheelchair, because the drug prescribed for me, as it turned out, was absolutely not suitable for me.”
However, the founders of the club do not deny that marijuana-based drugs also have some side effects, such as mild malaise and a feeling of constant hunger. However, according to Spiri, they all go away in a few days.