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Finland’s Government To Consider Decriminalizing Cannabis

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Cannabis advocates in Finland have gathered enough signatures for a cannabis decriminalization petition to require a review of the proposal by Finland’s Parliament. 50,000 petition signatures were required to require the review.

As described by Marijuana Moment, the proposal ‘stipulates that possession of 25 grams or less of cannabis, and the cultivation of up to four plants, would not carry criminal penalties.’ Only one cannabis plant can be dried at any given time according to the petition.

Kasvua Kannabiksesta, the group behind the petition, stated that many of the signatures were obtained close to the deadline. Per Yle:

“People usually leave things to the last minute. We’ve been promoting this recently and getting our message out on social media. There’s certainly more than 50,000 – or even more than 100,000 – people in Finland who support this issue,” Karvinen told Yle on Wednesday evening as the initiative still only had garnered around 41,000 signatures.

Karvinen said decriminalising cannabis is warranted because prohibition of the drug hasn’t worked.

“Primarily, punishing [the use of cannabis] does more harm than good. It promotes social exclusion and [convictions for cannabis possession] can hinder a person’s access to jobs or study spots,” he explained.

Just because the petition received enough signatures to trigger a review by Finland’s Parliament, it does not mean that what is being proposed will become law in Finland. It would be logical for Finland to get on the right side of history and adopt the sensible proposal, however, only time will tell if that proves to be the case.

As of this blog post, the petition has received over 57,000 signatures. You can read the content of the petition at this link here.