MIA's potential as a region to grow medicinal cannabis in the spotlight

CALLS are mounting for the MIA to become a legitimate region for growing cannabis for medical purposes. 

Earlier this week Member for Murray Austin Evans and Member for Farrer Sussan Ley both threw their support behind the idea. 

Now, Leeton Shire Council mayor Paul Maytom has given his thoughts on the matter. 

“At the end of the day we all what has happened in the past out here in our region,” he said. 

“But this here, is a positive thing. Absolutely a positive thing. 

“I’ve supported medical cannabis all of the way through from the time it was first mentioned. 

“I’ve read many reports where people have had to go overseas to get it because they couldn’t in Australia. Absolutely I’m 100 per cent behind the idea.”

Other politicians have also been vocal on the issue, especially since the new prescription-only laws coming into play for codeine medication recently. 

Liberal Democrats Senator David Leyonhjelm wants the federal government to “quit dithering” and cut the red tape preventing thousands of Australians suffering chronic pain from accessing medicinal cannabis.

“With prescription-only rules for codeine coming into effect today, it has now become a matter of urgency that seriously ill patients obtain access to an effective and safe alternative,” he said.

A poll being conducted online by The Irrigator has so found the idea of cannabis being grown for medicinal reasons in the MIA is one many would support. 

So far, 123 people have said they would they would like to see the crop grown here, with 11 saying they didn’t support the idea. 

Commenting on The Irrigator’s Facebook thread on the issue, John Maher said it was something that should certainly happen in the MIA. 

“Absolutely, as well as recreational cannabis when it's inevitably legalised,” he said.

“It's no secret that the MIA is a good place to grow it, so why not benefit from it?”

Rochelle Hayward agreed with Mr Maher and was hopeful it would help those in pain. “Considering the high cancer rates in the area it makes sense to produce it locally,” she said. 

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