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Barbados

Barbados: Health official against recreational use of cannabis

Despite Government’s declared intention to decriminalize small amounts of marijuana for personal use, the state’s main mental health institution is insisting on abstention except for medically prescribed purposes.

Director of the Psychiatric Hospital David Leacock said today his institution is firm in its position that no one should be using any type of narcotic drug whatsoever the amount.

“The hospital’s policy has been for the most part that we only believe marijuana should be used for medicinal reasons and prescribed by a medical practitioner. That still remains the case,” Leacock told Barbados TODAY this afternoon.

In fact, he warned Barbadians that marijuana poses a risk to the health of those who use it.

Law to be amended to end arrests for small amounts of cannabis

Being held with small amounts of cannabis will no longer be deemed a criminal act.

As part of efforts to free up police officers to deal with more serious matters as well as the Magistrates’ courts, persons caught with 14 grams of cannabis or less will no longer be arrested and hauled before the law courts, resulting in a criminal record.

Governor General Dame Sandra Mason today revealed that tickets would now instead be issued to the culprits and they would have 30 days to pay a $200 fine.

Persons caught smoking cannabis in public also will not be arrested and detained.

Police will have the option of issuing a ticket to that person who will have 30 days to pay.

Legalized Religiously – How Rastafari Tradition Is Helping Ease Cannabis Regulation in the Caribbean

Throughout history, cannabis has established itself as a popular recreational tool and powerful medicine, used in these ways worldwide according to local culture. For the Rastafari, though, it’s also a part of their religious tradition. As cannabis laws are reassessed globally, the push for religious freedom has helped loosen regulation for the Caribbean communities.

Medical cannabis could boost Barbados economy

Prime Minister Mia Amor Mottley today touted the proposed medicinal cannabis industry as a boost to he economy, as a new bill to set it up went before lawmakers.

As the House of Assembly debated the Medicinal Cannabis Industry Bill, the Minister of Finance said that if managed correctly, the trade could prove to be extremely lucrative.

Barbados-based medical marijuana businesses required to ensure local ownership

The Ministry of Agriculture in Barbados is requiring that any foreign cannabis companies that set-up shop in the country must ensure that locals own at least 30% of the business. This Medical Cannabis Bill 2019 was introduced in the House of Assembly in a bid to establish a legal industry. If this bill is adopted, Barbados would permit medical cannabis just as Jamaica, St Vincent & the Grenadines, and Antigua & Barbuda have. The Agriculture Minister gave a presentation on the bill which revealed that international companies have to create subsidiaries for local Barbadians.

Barbados Government promises Rastafarians 60 acres of land to grow marijuana

The Barbados government has promised to give members of the Rastafarian movement at least 60 acres of land for its members to grow marijuana legally.
Agriculture Minister Indar Weir, speaking in parliament on Friday, is also promising the group that it would play a major role in establishing a medicinal cannabis industry.
Weir said the government has met on numerous occasions with at least two groups representing the Rastafarian community and agreed they would be included in the industry.

Barbados Parliament to consider medicinal cannabis Bill

Barbados this week will become the latest country to actively pursue a medical marijuana program.

Dale Marshall, the country’s attorney general, said that a bill will be introduced to the Barbadian parliament on Tuesday. The legislation is expected to be debated later this month.

“We have committed to medicinal cannabis because, as a fella said: ‘You gotta go where the science takes you,’ but there is always going to be some push back,” Marshall said, as quoted by NationNews.

Caribbean: Regional cooperation urges in medical cannabis approach

At the same time, one industry expert is predicting that with Barbados having the highest consumption rate of cannabis per capita in the region, this could result in tremendous economic benefits for the country.

However, Dr Machel Emanuel, Teaching Assistant in the Department of Life Sciences at the University of the West Indies, Mona Campus, warned that developing the “right legislative framework” would be critical in how much the country benefits.

Barbados: Eyes out for potential marijuana business

One Canadian investor is eager to start sourcing marijuana from Barbados to export to other regions.

Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Green Stripe Naturals Wayne Isaacs told Barbados TODAY he was anticipating the passing of legislation here so he could invest significantly in helping to develop a medical cannabis industry.

“Our main goal in the cannabis industry is to produce enough cannabis from the Caribbean so we can start looking at exports across the world,” said Isaacs.

“In Barbados specifically, what we are looking at doing is potentially acquiring product from cultivators and again processing and extracting so that we can create more end-user products and also produce products for the medical market,” he said.

Mapped: The Countries That Smoke the Most Cannabis

The country with the biggest weed habit? That might surprise you.

A new report claims the UK government should legalise marijuana because it’s “the only solution to crime and addiction problems”.

The strongly-worded study – titled The Tide Effect: How the World is Changing its Mind on Cannabis – was produced by the nonpartisan Adam Smith Institute and has the backing of several cross-party MPs including former deputy prime minister, Nick Clegg.

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Is weed legal in barbados

Anyone busted smoking weed on the Caribbean island of Barbados will soon be able to walk away with only a fine, instead of being sent to prison.

This week, Barbados Governor General Dame Sandra Mason announced that the country’s Drug Abuse (Prevention and Control) Act will be amended to decriminalize minor cannabis offenses. Anyone caught with 14 or fewer grams of pot will now be charged with a $200 fine, which must be paid within 30 days. Cops can no longer arrest people for minor possession, or for smoking pot in public, and these offenses will not show up on permanent criminal records.

Dame Sandra said that “the conviction and incarceration of scores of young men and some women, causing them to lose their jobs, reputation, opportunity to travel, and to become stigmatized over miniscule quantities of marijuana that on the street would be called ‘a roach’ or ‘a spliff’,” is an issue “that requires compassion, understanding, empathy and the intervention of my Government,” Barbados Today reports.

“A significant amount of the time of our law enforcement officers and of our Magistrates’ Courts is taken up with dealing with individuals with small quantities of cannabis,” the governor general explained. “In 2019, 4,295 drug and drug related criminal charges were laid against accused persons. This represented 30 percent of the criminal charges laid in that year and were laid against 534 persons.”

Dame Sandra added that although these charges are minor, they “required the deployment of significant police resources in investigating, processing, taking statements and taking the cases through to trial. This process has little or no redemptive value and in human terms, a large number of our young men are forever left with the taint of the drug charges and the possible conviction.”

The new law will also allow cops to remand certain individuals to drug treatment programs. Anyone under the age of 18 who is caught with half an ounce or less will be sent to the National Council on Drug Abuse for counseling, and police can also send anyone older than 18 that they deem to be dependent on weed to counseling as well. Those sent to counseling must still pay their $200 fine, however.

Barbados is also working to implement a medical marijuana program, following the lead of several other Caribbean nations that have recently relaxed their prohibitions against weed. Jamaica, long renowned for its love of ganja, decriminalized pot and legalized medical marijuana in 2015, and many neighboring islands, including St. Vincent, the US Virgin Islands, Trinidad, and Haiti have also taken steps toward substantive cannabis reform. The islands of St. Kitts and Nevis have fully legalized personal pot use, and Bermuda is also planning to legalize full adult sales and use.

Barbados is following the lead of Jamaica, Trinidad, Haiti, and the US Virgin Islands in bringing cannabis reform to the Caribbean.