Medical cannabis will open door to legalisation - and that's no bad thing
While the Government is allowing a free vote on the de facto legalisation of 'medical' cannabis, An Garda Síochána is being directed to prosecute record numbers, generally for possession of tiny amounts of the drug.
This year, more than 15,000 people, mainly young men and teenagers, are facing a future as convicted criminals with the severe implications that has for their career prospects.
Some of those facing trial are charged with possession of major amounts of drugs. But the figures supplied to the Central Statistics Office by An Garda Síochána show that the vast majority are being prosecuted for tiny amounts, €10 or less, for personal consumption.