Thursday, 7 July, 2022
HomeMedico-LegalConCourt reserves judgment on decriminalisation of child use of cannabis

ConCourt reserves judgment on decriminalisation of child use of cannabis

That children are still prosecuted for the use and possession of cannabis, an act that has been decriminalised for adults, presents a dangerous narrative, and more appropriate consequences are needed. That was the opinion of Fair Independent Cannabis Association chairperson Sinenhlanhla Mnguni when the Constitutional Court reserved judgment on an application to review the decriminalisation of cannabis use by children.

The Weekend Argus reports that this comes after the Centre for Child Law said that the way in which children were being dealt with in the criminal justice system was not the correct response for children who used cannabis. The centre suggested more emphasis should be placed on treating youngsters for drug dependency rather than criminalising and incarcerating them.

Researcher and lawyer at the Centre for Child Law Isabel Magaya said how children were being dealt with did not align with section 3(b) of the Child Justice Act, which stated that “a child must not be treated more severely than an adult would have been treated in the same circumstances”. She said: “The significance of this case is that it establishes and underscores that the criminal justice system is not the correct forum for helping children who use cannabis. Furthermore, the case highlights that the law should not treat children more harshly than it does adults for the same offence – thus creating ‘status offences’.”



Cape Argus Pressreader article – Law on children, cannabis, should not ‘criminalise’ (Open access)


See more from MedicalBrief archives:


Gauteng judgment may transform treatment of children who use drugs


Dagga Bill regulating private use approved by Cabinet


Luxembourg first in Europe to legalise cannabis; Canada sees mostly good results



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