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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2019 Week 11 Hansard (Thursday, 26 September 2019) . . Page.. 3965 ..


of the numerous reasons why the legislation does not take effect on notification; this will occur at some stage in the future, when it is commenced by the Minister for Health. We currently anticipate that that will probably be at around the end of January next year. But as part of that there will be an education campaign for the broader community.

As was made very clear in speeches yesterday, and as I made very clear in speeches yesterday, there is some ambiguity at the moment, and people in the ACT do need to be aware of the risks. However, we do not anticipate that there will be a new crackdown. The CPO has been very clear on that, and I welcome his statements over the past 24 hours as well. We will continue to ensure that people are dealt with in the manner of a health approach for these small amounts of personal-use of cannabis.

MR HANSON: Attorney-General, what is the risk that was described by the government in its response to the committee inquiry, described as risks arising from interactions between territory and commonwealth law?

MR RAMSAY: I refer Mr Hanson to my statements in the chamber yesterday as part of the debate on the legislation, that there is still the commonwealth legislation that is in place. However, as I have said both in this place before and again today, and I have said it publicly beyond the chamber as well, it is a matter of ensuring that people are able to be supported in their particular life choices and that when they are choices to engage with drugs in some form of personal use, as is the case here, that they are responded to from a health perspective so that we ensure that we approach this from a harm minimisation point of view, not from a scaremongering, not from a sort of ramping things up in the way that—

Mr Hanson: Madam Speaker, on a point of order.

MADAM SPEAKER: Mr Hanson on a point of order. Resume your seat, minister.

Mr Hanson: My question referred to the risks identified in the government response to the committee inquiry, which are legal risks. I asked the Attorney-General for an explanation of the legal risks of the interactions between territory and commonwealth law. I would ask him to get to that point and be directly relevant.

MADAM SPEAKER: Minister Ramsay, in the time you have left; we are aware of the health support aspect of this.

MR RAMSAY: Thank you, Madam Speaker. I am happy in the time I have left to go back to what I said in the first place, which is that the risk is that the commonwealth legislation still remains as was the case before this particular piece of legislation went through. There is the chance that people may be arrested, may be prosecuted, may be taken to court. I mentioned that in my speech yesterday. We do not anticipate that being the case and neither, from his statements yesterday and today, does the Chief Police Officer.

Opposition members interjecting—


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