Cannabis facepalm

Australian committee recommends fighting the failing war on cannabis by doing the same thing


On 16 October 2019, the Public communications campaigns targeting drug and substance abuse inquiry resolved to ‘examine the impact of such public campaigns on drug abuse by different community cohorts‘, focusing on ‘campaigns targeting the abuse of illicit drugs‘. They recently released a list of their recommendations.

We were disappointed to see the members of the committee still hold cannabis in the same class as dangerous drugs such as opioids, methamphetamines, and alcohol. All of which claim thousands of Australians lives every year and put even more in hospital.

Cannabis should be considered under an entirely different ecosystem as it has not directly caused any deaths in Australia – ever. At least none ever recorded in Australian history. So why are they still lumping it in with the other substances? There can only be one reason – laziness. Or they’re scared.

They’re too lazy to develop a set of policies focusing on each individual substance, or they’re scared to admit cannabis should be held under different legislation as they’ll upset many of their voters who are also as uneducated as they are.

Here are the four recommendations they came up with:

Recommendation 1

The committee recommends the Australian Government implement a new public communications campaign via the National Drugs Campaign that will support law enforcement agencies’ efforts to reduce current and future illicit drug demand. The campaign should include the targeted use of social media.

Recommendation 2

The committee recommends future Australian Government communications campaigns include the following characteristics:

  • contain targeted messages on the dangers of illicit drug use to key cohorts;
  • reflect the lived experiences of illicit drug users and also the experiences of trusted people, such as teachers and healthcare workers, to establish behavioural change;
  • provide information on addiction treatment off-ramps;
  • include a national schools element that will take a multi-component approach to developing protective factors and involve the national education community in its design and implementation;
  • be based on appropriately detailed and considered research and, prior to commencement, have in place both quantitative and qualitative measures for efficacy; and,
  • take a long-term approach of at least 3-5 years and include a sustained approach to key cohorts over that entire period

Recommendation 3

The committee recommends the Australian Government establish a formal mechanism to ensure that Commonwealth, State and Territory law enforcement bodies have a strong, equal voice in developing policies and strategies to reduce illicit drug demand, including drug treatment services.

Recommendation 4

The committee recommends the Australian Government support research, potentially by the Australian Institute of Criminology, into the efficacy of addiction treatment programs in reducing drug-related crime recidivism.

They effectively spent two years coming up with recommendations that say keep doing the same thing we’ve been doing, even though what we’ve been doing has utterly failed in fighting the war on drugs.

We aren’t an alcohol, opioid, or methamphetamine-focused website, so we’ll only be considering cannabis. Here are a few facts about cannabis in recent times in Australia:

  • Australians consumed record levels of cannabis in 2020 – Source
  • The National Drug Household Survey reported for the first time in its history that in 2019 more Australians supported legalising recreational cannabis than oppose it – Source
  • Australian police seized more than $203 million worth of cannabis in 2020 which did little to stem supply or demand – Source
  • International criminal networks who have no respect for Australian law siphon billions of dollars out of Australia every year through the cannabis black market – Source
  • Keeping cannabis illegal allows criminal growers to use toxic additives on their crops which are harmful to consumers – Source
  • More than $1.1 billion of taxpayers money is spent policing cannabis every year – Source

To all members of the committee – how is doing the same thing over and over again whilst expecting a different result the right thing to do with cannabis?

Maybe it’s time for a change? Maybe it’s time to seriously consider the benefits of legalising cannabis in Australia.

If you’d like to get in touch with the committee members and voice your own opinion to them on the subject, here are their contact details:

Please do not harass them. Simply ask them a few questions:

  • Why do you think legislating cannabis the same as these other dangerous drugs?
  • Why do you think doing the same thing will stop supply and demand?
  • Is it beneficial to the Australian government to keep funding these criminal networks by keeping cannabis in the black market?

We also found it interesting that the average age of the committee members is 50.9 years old. Meaning they were almost the exact generation to be hampered by global cannabis fear-mongering for most of their lives.

So we can understand why it may be difficult for them to change their opinions. But as politicians and as people representing our livelihoods, that’s exactly what these members need to do when new research and facts come to light.

Stay informed with the latest cannabis news in Australia.



  1. It’s not a question of “do you approve of people using cannabis?” The question is “Should people be arrested/jailed for using cannabis?”

  2. I’m the editor of cannabis law report and it is hilarious talking to Americans, something I do daily they , being their usual well mannered and polite selves, just smile knowingly to themselves – as of this week even states like Mississippi and Alabama have more advanced thinking on cannabis than Australia – cannabis in Australia is indicative of this govt’s thatcherite ghetto mindset on just about everything

    • WTF is Australia doing. We’ll be the last country in the world to legalise it at this rate. The clowns running the country need changing as we are becoming the laughing stock of the world

  3. I love Australia however the 1950’s mindset over Cannabis is making us the laughing stock of the world. We can do better.

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