Connect with us


Portugal: Mothers for Cannabis Movement convenes March for April 2 in Lisbon



“A plant of everyone, for everyone!” is the motto that the Mothers for Cannabis Movement will take to the streets of Lisbon next Sunday, April 2nd, in a March that will claim access to cannabis and hemp in Portugal. The gathering takes place at 15:20 pm in Largo Camões and will head for the Assembly of the Republic at 16:20 pm, and hopes to bring together hundreds of people from all over the country.

Speaking to Cannareporter, Paula Mota, jurist and president of Associação Mães pela Canábis, who has a 14-year-old daughter with Dravet Syndrome, a form of Refractory Epilepsy, explained that “in Portugal, many patients, including children, already successfully use oils derived from hemp and cannabis flowers, rich in cannabidiol (CBD), tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and many other cannabinoids, to help in the treatment of pathologies such as epilepsy, autism, multiple sclerosis or cancer, among many others”.

Paula Mota, Jurist and mother of Margarida, who has refractory epilepsy, founded the Movimento Mães Pela Canábis. Photo: Laura Ramos | cannareporter

However, and despite the fact that medicinal use in Portugal has already been regulated since 2018, cannabis derivatives in pharmacies are practically non-existent, limited to Sativex, a variety of flowers with 18% THC and Epidyolex – the latter only through of SEA (Special Use Authorization) and only for rare diseases. But none of these options work for Paula Mota's daughter, who is outraged by the government's inertia in finding solutions for families in this situation. “Although Portugal is one of the largest cannabis producers in the world, only three cannabis derivatives are available in the Portuguese market. Furthermore, most physicians are still not prescribing, because the Endocannabinoid System is not included in the curricula of Medical Schools. It is urgent to move forward with the education of health professionals and society in general, breaking down stigmas and prejudices”, she warns.

Paula Mota also draws attention to the hemp sector, which is experiencing uncertain times. “We need less prohibition and more clarity in the laws, facilitating access to those who can benefit from the use of cannabis and reducing bureaucracy in the cultivation of hemp, respecting what several European courts have already reiterated, that the free circulation of the entire hemp plant, including its flowers cannot be prohibited in the Member States of the European Union”, he stresses. And she continues, saying that “it cannot be said that the production of hemp flowers is illegal in Portugal, when a Portuguese court has already forced the Judiciary Police to return hemp flowers to a trader, as it is not a narcotic”.

Self-cultivation for personal consumption will also be on the agenda in the demands of the March for Cannabis. “This is the only form of access for many patients and users, who do not have the economic power to bear the high costs of cannabis, and access to the plant must be guaranteed as a human right”, he says.

Paula Mota says that “for a sensible and inclusive regulation of cannabis, which respects all people and equity, it is essential to listen and meet the needs of patients, respecting fundamental rights and freedoms, and also guaranteeing their access to health, enshrined in the Constitution of the Portuguese Republic”.

In addition, the president of the Movement says that it is necessary and urgent to create an independent office just for matters related to cannabis and hemp. “The cannabis situation in Portugal is so confusing that many Members of Parliament and State officials, no matter how well they have, do not even know what they are talking about. There needs to be an organization specializing in cannabis and hemp, with representation from all associations and sectors that are transversal to the use of the plant, as there is a lot of misinformation and that does not help ”, she laments.

The Mothers for Cannabis Movement calls on all families, patients, caregivers, hemp farmers and traders and all cannabis users to gather in Lisbon and march together to show the government and the country that access to this plant is a right of all.

The March for Cannabis Manifesto includes 10 essential demands:

1. Compliance with the Right to Health by the Portuguese State, facilitating the training of health professionals, provided for in Law 33/2018, including the introduction of Medicinal Cannabis and the Endocannabinoid System in the curricula of Medical Faculties, in order to ensure knowledge of advances science and safe access to cannabis therapies for all;

2. Increase the availability of cannabis medicines, substances and preparations in pharmacies, forcing companies producing cannabis in Portuguese territory to obligatorily apply for ACM's (Marketing Authorization) for their cannabis derivatives, so that they do not dedicate themselves to export only;

3. Extend the list of therapeutic indications provided by Infarmed, reviewing the existing scientific literature, and consider cannabis as a possible first-line treatment or complementary to conventional treatments, including for those under 1 years of age, who are currently excluded from possible treatments with THC. Science has systematically proven the high safety profile of cannabinoids, with few adverse effects and without causing physical dependence, especially when compared to opioids or benzodiazepines; several studies have already shown, in fact, that CBD can not only help treat addictions to other substances (such as medication, alcohol or tobacco) but also treat psychoses, contrary to what has been propagated by those who have not yet studied the subject;

4. Urgently recognize the right to personal and associative cultivation of cannabis as the only form of access for many patients residing in Portugal, as has already happened with several patient associations in other countries;

5. Respect the right to freedom of choice and autonomy over one's own body, authorizing personal cultivation for consumption by adults in their right mind, as they cannot remain at the mercy of drug trafficking networks or unregulated parallel markets, where there are much more dangerous, manipulated substances (such as synthetic cannabinoids) or “uninformed consumption”. Citizens cannot continue to allow the authorities to persecute and interfere with their private life or be the target of ridicule or false morals. We all know that alcohol and tobacco kill, cannabis does not!

6. Invest in risk prevention and harm reduction programs that bring more and better information about cannabis to Portuguese society, especially young people;

7. Encourage the local economy and sustainability by promoting the cultivation of hemp and the use of all parts of the plant, not just the fiber and seeds, and spreading its importance in the sustainability of the country and the planet;

8. Urgently review the Ordinance that prevents small farmers from investing in industrial hemp, as it is discriminatory and discourages agriculture and the local economy. This does not happen with other species, such as corn, olive oil or sunflowers.

9. Regulate in a clear, inclusive and independent way all potential businesses in the field, namely the trade in hemp and its derivatives, which is currently in a gray area of ​​the law, where it is not prohibited (since there are dozens of stores open to the public by across the country), but it is also not properly regulated, often leading to undue inspections and seizures, which culminated in the court forcing the Judiciary Police to return hemp flowers to a trader.

10. Finally, and due to the specificity of the issue, create an independent office for matters related to cannabis and hemp, with representation from all associations, stakeholders and cross-sectors related to the use of the plant.


Watch the Documentary "Patients"

Documentary Patients Laura Ramos help us grow

Mais recentes

International1 hours ago

USA: Minnesota is the 23rd state to legalize adult use of cannabis

Minnesota is the latest US state to legalize adult cannabis use, with the new regulation...

International2 days ago

Colombia: Lack of quorum postpones seventh debate on the legalization of recreational cannabis

The path towards the legalization of cannabis for recreational purposes in Colombia experienced a ridiculous episode yesterday at the First Constitutional Commission...

International3 days ago

Decriminalization of drug possession returns to the Brazilian Supreme Court on June 1

The anticipated debate in the Federal Supreme Court of Brazil, regarding the decriminalization of drugs, was initially scheduled for 24th of...

International4 days ago

Colombia: Seventh debate takes place today and legalization may be in sight

The Senate of Colombia will discuss during today a proposal to amend the Political Constitution of Colombia,...

International5 days ago

Competition Bureau Canada recommends easing rules for recreational cannabis

Canada's Competition Watch Agency has published a report recommending some changes to Canada's cannabis laws...

International5 days ago

Iceland considers 4-year medical cannabis access pilot project

Iceland could be the next European country to allow the use of cannabis for medicinal purposes, after a...

International6 days ago

Amsterdam will fine anyone who smokes cannabis in public in the Red Light District

The ban on cannabis use in public in the Red-Light District in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, has now come into force, to...

International6 days ago

Spain: Minister of Health promises report on medical cannabis by the end of May

The Minister of Health of Spain, José Manuel Miñones, announced that he will present a report by the end of May to...

International7 days ago

Authorities find 2 tonnes of hashish adrift off the coast of Gibraltar

Gibraltar Customs agents seized a total of 53 bales of hashish, weighing approximately 2...

JOBS1 weeks ago

Have you ever thought about working with cannabis? It's getting easier and easier to find a job in this area!

The cannabis industry is one of the fastest growing in Europe and the one with the most jobs going...