While Possessing marijuana isn’t exactly legal in Jamaica, the Jamaican government altered a 1913 law & decriminalized the possession of small amounts, up to 2 ounces, on February 6, 2015, Bob Marley’s birthday. Jamaicans can now smoke it for spiritual purposes and US citizens, who carry a medical marijuana permit, can also partake while on the island, but consumption in public areas is still illegal. Prior to 2015, possession of the marijuana plant could face 5yrs in jail but fortunately, opinions, medical benefits, and laws are finally changing.
Just as the United States debates the merits of marijuana legalization, the Jamaican government is taking baby steps toward the decision to fully legalize possession of marijuana as medical merits & budget shortfalls are being debated. The Marijuana plant has two chemicals. THC is responsible for the high while CBD is hailed for the medical benefits now being studied for helping ailments such as lupus, Crohn’s disease, chronic pain, epilepsy and even cancer.
The marijuana plant also has economic benefits. With lingering concerns about economic stability and budget shortfalls, Jamaicans notice the economic benefits afforded o Colorado, Washington and Oregon. There are over 180 million marijuana smokers worldwide and it is estimated that the revenue from a single marijuana plant is $2,200.00 US. Colorado estimated In the first 6months, over 202 million Dollars in sales and 4.2 million Dollars in Taxes.
“To make marijuana against the law is like saying God Made a mistake” -Bob Marley
Passing this legislation positions Jamaica to reap some of the economic and medical benefits and face the challenges of the marijuana industry.