At bloody last! this is the first real progress on the subject, in thirty years….

no enough of course, because they still say it is wrong, and against the law.

I say the law is wrong, and criminalizes otherwise, law abiding citizens. This will make no difference to most, since it was / is ignored my users.

The Home Office has started a campaign today, to explain the change in status. You can see what they have to say on a site titled: ‘Talk to Frank’

The Government will reclassify cannabis from a Class B to a Class C drug, the new legislation will take effect on 29 January 2004 across the United Kingdom.

Reclassification means the Government acknowledge that cannabis is not as harmful as other Class B substances like Speed. But the supply and possession of cannabis will still be illegal. Penalties for supplying will stay the same (with a maximum of 14 years). The maximum prison sentence for possession will be reduced from five years to two. Fines and other non-custodial sentences like compulsory community service will still apply.

For those over 18, most offences of cannabis possession are likely to result in a warning and confiscation of the drug. But you could be arrested if you smoke in a public place, near a place where there are children e.g a school, or where public order is at risk. Those who repeatedly commit offences will be arrested and will be prosecuted.

If you are under 18, and it’s your first offence of cannabis possession you will normally be arrested, taken to the police station and given a warning or a reprimand.

If it’s not your first offence, you will be given either a final warning or you will be charged. If you have been given a warning in the past and you get caught again you’ll most likely be charged. When you get a warning you are referred to the local Youth Offending team (YOT).