The ACT Government has ignored the concerns of ACT Police, the Australian Federal Police Association, and 1,800 ACT residents who have signed a petition sponsored by Jeremy Hanson MLA.
By legislating to decriminalise the possession of up to 15 lines (1.5 gm) of destructive, mind-altering, drugs such as meth amphetamine (ice), the ACT becomes the first Australian jurisdiction to legislate such radical drug laws.
In their submission to an inquiry into dangerous driving, ACT Police said:
“In 2021, a proposed amendment to the Drugs of Dependence Act 1989 was introduced into the ACT Legislative Assembly to decriminalise possession of small amounts for certain illicit substances. ACT Policing hold concerns that decriminalising the proposed substances could increase road trauma, noting that driving under the influence is associated with higher harms, such as dangerous driving and vehicle collisions resulting in fatalities.”
Australian Federal Commissioner Reece Kershaw has previously said,
“It’s going to mean that organised crime will want to target this community in particular, because they can move their product quite easily. The passing of this bill will make it difficult for the police to combat the rise of cocaine, methamphetamine and heroin use – and they’re not recreational drugs.”
Decriminalised drug limits will include amphetamine – 1.5 grams cocaine – 1.5 grams, meth – 1.5 grams, mdma – 1.5 grams, heroin – 1 gram, cannabis – 50 grams, psilocybin – 1.5 grams, lsd – 0.001 grams. The penalty for possession will be a caution, $100 fine, or a referral to a drug program.
Rob Norman, ACT Political Director for the Australian Christian Lobby said, “Individual lives are ruined and whole communities injured, when laws intended to maintain behaviour and practices are dismantled.”
If you are ACT resident, and have not signed it already, please sign Jeremy Hanson’s petition which will continue to run until the new legislation is enacted later in 2023.