A controversial draft bill on legalizing the recreational use of marijuana was unveiled by Health Minister Karl Lauterbach after it was approved by the Cabinet.
Lauterbach said, it was a “turning point” but stressed on the use of the drug terming it “risky and dangerous.”
He said the aim was to curb the black-market and drugs-related criminality, the trade with adulterated or toxic substances, and the number of consumers.
The draft law would make it legal for people over 18 years to possess up to 25 grams (0.9 ounces) of cannabis and to cultivate up to three plants for personal use.
There will also be approved so-called cultivation associations often called “Cannabis Social Clubs” which will provide their members with homegrown cannabis products. However, these come with terms and conditions that members will not be permitted to consume cannabis on the club’s premises, clubs must be 200 meters away from schools, daycare centers and kindergartens.
Agriculture Minister Cem Ozdemir said that the draft legislation was a significant step towards a progressive, reality-based drugs policy that will decriminalize many people who use cannabis solely for private purposes and protect children and young people.
The bill has faced opposition from physicians and police unions. The physicians have termed and warned it saying “It is a threat to the mental health and development of children opportunities of young people in Germany.”
Despite the opposition, Lauterbach remains unfazed, considers the criticism from both sides a good sign, and speaks of “a law with a sense of proportion.”