Lucy’s letter to PM

PASSIONATE LETTER: In a passionate and heart-wrenching letter, Lucy Haslam had implored Mr Abbott to stand up and be counted – and get his political colleagues and other party leaders to give the bill a go. 100815BSB02Medicinal cannabis mum Lucy Haslam heads off to Canberra today to try to convince federal politicians to back a landmark bill that will give pain-stricken people legal access to medical marijuana.

The crusading mother of young Dan Haslam goes to the federal capital to drive cross-party support for the bill in the senate, but on the tail of an emotional plea to PM Tony Abbott to press the case too.

In a passionate and heart-wrenching letter, Mrs Haslam had implored Mr Abbott to stand up and be counted – and get his political colleagues and other party leaders to give the bill a go.

Mrs Haslam said the PM had indicated his support when he replied to a letter written on her behalf by Sydney broadcaster Alan Jones – but now she needed him to be true to his word and “stand up for desperate Australians.”

The Tamworth mother who became a virtual drug supplier after giving her dying son Dan a joint of marijuana to relieve the debilitating nausea and vomiting he suffered after three years of chemotherapy for his bowelcancer has been invited to attend a policy briefing for federal politicians on Wednesday.

Mrs Haslam said she’d been told the briefing would include the findings of the senate committee inquiry into the legal issues of the bill andshe hoped they were positive andsupportive.

The committee was granted an extension by the Senate for reporting on the bill until today.

Six months after Dan Haslam died at the age of 25 after spearheading a campaign to highlight the pain and grief of the law, and a fight to decriminalise the use of medical marijuana for sufferers, Mrs Haslam is more determined than ever to add legislative legitimacy to Dan’s legacy.

She wants bipartisan support and political push to get the Regulator of Medical Cannabis Bill 2014 given the time and effort to be debated and passed in the Senate.

“If they have the political will,that would be fantastic,” Mrs Haslam said yesterday.

The bill has been put up by the Greens leader Dr Richard Di Natale and has the support of the minor parties – but Mrs Haslam has appealed to the PM to drive more political will and favour to the issue.

“Mr Abbott, it is your time to shine and show Australia that you mean what you say. Please give the Regulator of Medicinal Cannabis Bill a chance by allocating urgent and adequate time for it to be debated and by giving it your personal, and Australian government endorsement, to help it across the line,” Mrs Haslam has written.

“Help me fulfil my promise to Dan and make the legislative changes that are needed by thousands of Australians with genuine medical need and supported by the vast majority of the Australian population.”

The bill would establish a federal authority to oversee all aspects of the medical marijuana industry, including formulating rules and monitoring compliance for licensing the production, manufacture, supply and use of it.

The Doing if For Dan appeal, launched after his parents Lucy, a former nurse, and Lou, a former drug squad detective, virtually went on the black market to get the drug cannabis for their desperately sick son – and then encourage him to smoke it – has shone a light on the subject and garnered astonishing public support for the campaign.

The passing of the Senate bill would be a huge step for scores of others suffering incredible pain.

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