Possession of marijuana now legal in Canberra as ACT comes into effect

  • January 31, 2020

Residents of Canberra, the capital of Australia, aged 18 or above are now able to possess up to 50 grams of cannabis and grow two plants for personal use.

Friday marks the start of the new laws passed in the capital at the ACT Legislative Assembly in September, with health authorities rolling out a new campaign.

Australian government has maintained the ACT is not encouraging the use of cannabis and has called the laws an “evolutionary change”.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison joked he would not be partaking in the new changes, saying the Commonwealth wouldn’t intervene to overturn the laws.

“I’ve always been a federalist, and states will make their own decisions according to their own priorities,” Morrison told the National Press Club on Wednesday.

“I would expect federal law enforcement agencies to enforce the law.”

ACT Attorney-General Gordon Ramsay said people who used cannabis would be more likely to seek drug help under the new laws.

“This isn’t about legalizing and getting a system of sale going on … all we are doing is providing a legal excuse for adults,” Ramsay said on Thursday. “They are small changes. They are important changes.”

Police are still able to charge people for possession under federal law rather than ACT law.

Canberrans will be able to use marijuana in their own homes, possess up to 50 grams of dried cannabis and grow two plants.

A maximum of four plants can be grown per household. Hydroponic set ups are still illegal. Similarly, drug-driving laws will still be in effect and users cannot expose children to the drug.

People are also not able to legally buy seeds to grow the plants.