The Pro-Legalisation Pollies You Should Vote For in the 2020 Queensland State Election

Who Should Legalisation Advocates Vote For in the Upcoming Queensland State Election?

A mock ‘how to vote’ card, to assist you on the day.

With a particularly spooky general election occurring all across the ‘Sunshine State’ in late October (on the 31st – Halloween!), FAB has set out to identify the best pro-cannabis candidates across the state. We did this to help our banana-bending readers make the most informed decisions they can, giving QLD (and the rest of the country!) the best possible chances for decriminalisation, law reform and legalisation.

Contrary to popular belief, Queensland may not be as far away from political and legal breakthroughs as we generally imagine. Evidence-based research from the Government itself is in – decriminalisation would plug massive drains on the resources and finances of the state government. Yet, the major political parties, set in their ways and vested interests, are preventing these common-sense changes… signalling no change.

It’s high time. We need to put the pressure on. As a cannabis community, we can make a massive difference together upon the broader social collective… if we have our voices heard.

All of the following candidates are pro-cannabis legalisation; they’re running in the 2020 Queensland State Election, in an attempt to become local representatives (MPs, or ‘Members of Parliament’) for the state of Queensland; its highest political office. These are names you should be looking out for on your ballot box… if you want your Labor government to listen!

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The Queensland Greens

The Queensland Greens are perhaps some of the strongest progressive political advocates in the state’s parliamentary politics; not to mention, one of the more reliably grassroots ‘Greens’ chapters, across the nation. Unlike the state Greens in Victoria and New South Wales, they have excellent campaigning, and a near-perfect policy record in government.

Candidates and members from The Queensland Greens consistently fight hard to spur meaningful changes, both inside and outside the halls of parliament. It’s simply no different when it comes to legal cannabis. As a party, the Queensland Greens are echoing the state Productivity Commission’s findings; calling for regulated, legal cannabis, and for drug use to be decriminalised across the state.

 

Michael Berkman MP

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Incumbent for Maiwar
Elected in 2017

Michael is a local MP that is doing things differently. He is the first (and thus far, only) Greens member to be elected as a Queensland MP. In his first term, he unapologetically brought drug decriminalisation and cannabis legalisation into the conversation for the first time in Queensland Parliament… ever. 

It’s important that Michael is returned for a second term, for him and his team to remain resourced. We want to see continued proactive community organising occurring in the district of Maiwar. With leadership that listens and supports such efforts, we could make remarkable things happen.

Maiwar consists of the suburbs of Mount Coot-tha, Bardon, Auchenflower, Toowong, Taringa, Indooroopilly, St Lucia and Fig Tree Pocket.

PHONE CONTACT
(07) 3737 4100

OFFICE ADDRESS
Suite 1, 49 Station Road
INDOOROOPILLY, QLD

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Amy MacMahon

Candidate for South Brisbane

The Greens now only need a few hundred votes to win in the electorate of South Brisbane – your vote could make all the difference in a new parliament.

The electorate of South Brisbane encompasses suburbs in Brisbane’s inner-south; stretching from East Brisbane to West End, and south to Annerley. Parts of Greenslopes and Coorparoo are also located in the electorate.

PHONE CONTACT
0466 859 721

OFFICE ADDRESS
20 Hockings Street
WEST END, QLD

Legalise Cannabis Queensland

Queenslanders suffer from the harshest cannabis laws in Australia. They also experience the highest number of cannabis prosecutions in the country; over 20,000 cannabis offences are handed out in Queensland each year. That’s 5000 more than New South Wales, and twice the number of prosecutions, in contrast to Victoria… both of which are more populated states.

To combat the decades-long discrimination against cannabis users, activists from the MCUA and HEMP have joined to form Legalise Cannabis Queensland; supporting the amazing candidates campaigning to legalise cannabis in Queensland. An executive committee was formed, and the organisation successfully acquired 605 members to register as a political party in the upcoming QLD election.

The Queensland Productivity Commission estimated that if the state decriminalised cannabis and MDMA, there would be a net benefit of $850 million dollars annually to the Queensland economy. Legalisation of cannabis and MDMA would yield greater benefits, still; around $1.2 billion, annually.

Australia: Queensland’s Productivity Commission Report Says legalise cannabis & MDMA

It’s not a secret, anymore: the legalisation of cannabis in Queensland will save billions of dollars over the course of decades, and reduce the need to build more prisons.

Legalise Cannabis Queensland believes that cannabis should be free to grow, process and share, without a license. Reform should be done at the state level to regulate the sale of cannabis products; with an effective licensing scheme for traders, ensuring compliance with quality control/human consumption safety standards.

The LCQ currently have candidates running in 18 electorates: Inala, Southern Downs, Redlands, Everton, Ipswich, Gaven, Mermaid Beach, Bundaberg, Rockhampton, Mount Ommaney, Nanango, Whitsunday, Burleigh, Mackay, Mansfield, McConnel, West Ipswich and Maryborough.

Be sure to preference your local LCQ candidate, if you live in one of these electorates!

EMAIL ADDRESS
contact@legalisecannabisqld.org.au

Josip Zirdum

Yes, that’s right. Our very own Joe LaGrasso from the FAB Team is now officially running for Queensland State Parliament, joining forces with other proud cannabis advocates under the banner of Legalise Cannabis Queensland.

Joe is the LCQ candidate for the electorate of Miller; consisting of the inner-southwest suburbs of Brisbane. Miller covers the suburbs of Chelmer, Graceville, Sherwood, Tennyson, Yeerongpilly, Rocklea, Yeronga, Fairfield, Annerley, Tarragindi and Moorooka. 

Josip is an industrious young fellow. As a web developer, educator, and online marketer by trade, Joe takes joy in building things; bringing the passions of his community to life.

One of Josip’s true passions in life is cannabis. As a matter of fact, he has recently obtained a medicinal prescription for cannabis.

He firmly believes that ‘the whole plant’ ought to be brought into regulated public access for adults 18 and over. Our government should institute a legal framework to create the space for an efficient, open and diverse cannabis industry to emerge in Australia – for both recreational and medicinal purposes.

Joe is convinced that such a framework – if it were to adopt key lessons from the experiences of other legal models across the world – would eventually provide massive returns to the Australian economy.

Joe’s passion has made itself manifest in the online cannabis space. He is the founder of ‘Friendly Aussie Buds’ (or FAB); a publication with a mission to inform, entertain and support the Australian cannabis community through prohibition and into legalisation.

For over two years, Josip has worked with a small team to deliver high-quality cannabis-related content to the web. Joe co-hosts ‘The Friendly Aussie Podcast’, interviewing people of interest in the ‘cannabis space’ and beyond.

FAB’s ‘FCK PGR‘ campaign has educated hundreds of thousands of Australians about the harmful impacts of black-market cannabis infused with toxic plant growth hormones. FAB’s articles and branding have shone a new light on the phenomenon, in clearly demonstrating to regular folks how they can identify PGR from a cursory glance.

FAB’s steadfast focus on education, harm minimisation and drug reform/cannabis legalisation advocacy has already given Joe many opportunities to cultivate connections through the cannabis plant. Running to represent at the state level is the next step in deepening and expanding those connections.

Josip invites the people of his electorate to imagine a future where Queensland adults are free to ‘get high’, or simply use cannabis; no matter their social or economic background… and without some fancy prescription. Better yet, you should be permitted to grow a supply of your own!

The vibrant and diverse Aussie cannabis community is still unfairly stigmatised; relegated to the fringes of society, rather than receiving the acknowledgement we deserve. In response, Joe wants to bring the argument for legalisation to the mainstream. With the help of the voices, contributions and votes of regular Queenslanders, we can see institutions flip their script overnight.

Joe argues that not only is legalising cannabis just plain ‘common sense’; safe production and distribution of cannabis for both medicinal and recreational consumers is a human right.

Beginning on the state level, cannabis legalisation in Australia has the potential to establish our nation as a global leader in bud quality and yield, as well as in fields of research and development geared towards innovative new cannabis and hemp products. Right now, however, we are only falling further behind the rest of the world, under the restrictive TGA licensing and scheduling scheme.

Our communities must take bold steps forward to remain prosperous during this turbulent moment in time. Josip knows this, and proposes cannabis as part of the potential solution.

Joe is absolutely honoured to be leading the LCQ ticket for cannabis advocates across his own electorate! If you live in the electorate of Miller, be sure to VOTE 1 JOSIP – we may even see you at the polling booth!

PHONE CONTACT
0468356747

Shelly Morton

Candidate for Ipswich

Shelly Morton is all about putting the needs of Ipswich first.
She will be running in the electorate to call for structural reform to the existing legal framework, which includes cannabis legalisation.

Shelly is a mum and business woman, who spends her days helping other women to stand up against the stigma of using cannabis. She supports and encourages the use of cannabis in contexts of period pain, chronic ills, to assist with one’s mental health, or for social reasons.

Shelly also has bipolar and schizophrenia. As a legitimate medicinal user of cannabis, Shelly has faced countless boundaries to legal access, and has yet to be accepted into the medicinal cannabis scheme. Shelly is running for all legal adults to gain the right to access cannabis – a life-changing herb – whether medicinally or recreationally.
Shelly is a core member of the ‘Her Highness’ online community and support group, with over 10 000 women from across Australia as members. Her Highness won ‘The Peoples Choice Award’ in the 2020 Cannabis Industry Awards.

PHONE CONTACT
0423 586 956

Independent Candidates

Dr. John Jiggens

Candidate for South Brisbane

If you live in the electorate of South Brisbane, you could always vote for John Jiggens!

John is a seasoned cannabis historian, who has written several books on the origin of contemporary cannabis laws. He was also a HEMP candidate for the Senate in 2019. Now, he’s running for local MP of South Brisbane.

“Queensland spends $500 million annually on the failed policy of the war on drugs. Prisons are overflowing, and are operating at 130% of capacity. The state outlays $1 billion dollars annually on prisons, and is faced with building another two new prisons to house an anticipated four thousand extra prisoners over the next five years. The expenditure needed for these prisons is estimated to be $3.6 billion dollars – a scandalous waste!

– Dr. John Jiggens

The electorate of South Brisbane encompasses suburbs in Brisbane’s inner-south; stretching from East Brisbane to West End, and south to Annerley. Parts of Greenslopes and Coorparoo are also located in the electorate.

Finn Armstrong-Schmakeit

Candidate for Bulimba

If Finn were to become the representative for the seat of Bulimba, he is on record: he would set forward a bill to legalise cannabis across the state on the first sitting of the new parliament.

He may be a controversial name in some circles (thanks to his online social presence), but he’s also a man for the job; an independently-minded populist figurehead, who would not take ‘no’ for an answer.

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Finn Armstrong-Schmakeit on Legalising Cannabis in QLD | Friendly Aussie Podcast - Episode 21

Is there anyone that we missed?
If there is a pro-cannabis politician you know of that is running in the QLD state election, but is not on this list… let us know down in the comments. 
We’ll add them!

Who NOT to Put ‘First’ on Your Ballot Paper

Queensland how to vote
Just follow this very simple ‘who to vote last’ card, for optimum results.

Queensland Labor

As part of its response to the Queensland Productivity Commissions’ inquiry into imprisonment and recidivism (QPC Report), the Palaszczuk Government confirmed that it has no intention of altering any drug laws in Queensland. 

Incredibly disappointing, as it means that our supposedly left-leaning government of the day has no guts, and our community will have to drag them kicking and screaming to the correct position.

This decision to ignore expert socio-economic advice was also made in spite of the most signed government e-petition of that year relating directly to the legalisation of cannabis for both medicinal and recreational use. Stubborn bastards!

Cannabis Legalisation is QLD’s Most Signed Petition in Past Year

 

The Liberal National Party

If you can’t get Queensland Labor to do it… these guys are never going to get there, in a million years.

One Nation

Not our allies in the fight for legal cannabis, and should be put below the two majors for their terrible, exclusionary rhetoric and policies.

SIGN THE NEW PETITION – Make Some Noise Before QLD Votes!

New petition demands cannabis reform in Queensland

Help LEGALISE CANNABIS in Queensland in 2020!

Mitch

Author: Mitch

Mitch Keys is a young writer from Brisbane, Australia unfolding in a dynamic process of becoming (like everyone else, so don’t go thinking he’s special or anything). He likes being alive.

Mitch
Mitch Keys is a young writer from Brisbane, Australia unfolding in a dynamic process of becoming (like everyone else, so don’t go thinking he’s special or anything). He likes being alive.

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brett j
brett j
19 days ago

Voting should require a bit more thinking than a single interest. For example Greens may well be more pro marijuana but you also get some really out there unworkable, impractical and downright batshit crazy policies thrown in like a few that promote child sex.
Check it out but pretty sure my comments will get binned as public speach and opinion is also classed as restricted for Greens followers.

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