Releaf, a non-governmental organisation that works for the legalisation of cannabis, criticised Caritas and Oasi on Friday for “using puerile tactics to instill fear” rather than promote education.
In a statement reacting to another by the two organisations on Thursday, in which they said the government’s bill on cannabis reform will create more harm than good, Releaf accused the two organisations of increasing stigma rather than promoting justice.
The bill, presented to Parliament this week, proposes allowing cannabis users to grow plants at home or buy the substance from specially set up associations but smoking joints in public will remain illegal.
Releaf said that while it respected freedom of thought and expression, it could not understand how the two organisations could issue such a statement adopting" a vindictive policy" that divided when they insisted on the importance of research, empathy and dialogue.
They also failed to be constructive in their criticism, it charged.
Releaf said the two organisations failed to acknowledge the damage done by an illegal cannabis market, run by organised criminality.
Users, it said, should have the necessary tools to ensure they are consuming a safe product.
Caritas and Oasi, Releaf continued, were continuing to give the impression that the reform is aimed at destroying, rather than repairing, the current situation.
It said it is amazing how Caritas and Oasi did not say anything on the psychological, economic and social damage to people who are arrested, strip searched and interrogated, and after years waiting for court to pass judgement, are sent to prison.
Releaf's reaction in full can be read in the pdf link below.
Independent journalism costs money. Support Times of Malta for the price of a coffee.Support Us