By Amiea Eleban
Marijuana is illegal in Germany, much like other countries. It is considered an Appendix drug;
3 drug ( which neither too dangerous to market or prescribe (equivalent to a Schedule 3 in the US), however, there is still punishment for possession or sales. It can range from a fine of $30,000 USD to two years in prison if the person is over the age of 21.
There is no law against consumption of marijuana.
In 2017, Germany’s Health Minister, Herman Grohe, passed a resolution that made marijuana medically legal, but only for those who are classified as having a serious illness. Patients must utilize all medical options before being considered for medical marijuana.
To get their medical card, patients need to:
- Meet with a physician who is licensed in medical cannabis
- Discuss their medical history with the new doctor
- The doctor must then go over all the risks of using medical marijuana with each potential MMJ patient
- Get a MMJ prescription, complete with dosage, and a list of other medications the patient can use
- Have prescription filled by a pharmacy that carries medical marijuana
The doctor will make the call on what method and when a patient can consume cannabis (this is to prevent patients from using it recreationally).
The patient goes to a pharmacy that carries medical marijuana to fill their prescription. If a patient has a valid prescription for their medical marijuana, they are protected from prosecution as long as they only have the prescribed amount (side note: for those who do not possess a medical marijuana prescription: if you only have a “small amount” you can avoid being prosecuted. This can range from 6-15 grams, depending on where you are in Germany.)
With 95,000 patients using medical marijuana in Germany, supply is a problem. Patients are having a hard time getting their prescriptions filled. Germany imports their medical marijuana from the Netherlands and Canada and they hope to have locally grown cannabis to better serve their patients in the future. Patients are not allowed to grow their own cannabis as the German Legislature hopes this will stop cannabis from going black market.
There is a lot of activism going on in Germany, but one protest was particularly unorthodox. In the town of Göttingen, a group of college students, calling themselves “the green youth,” planted 1,000 marijuana seeds around town in protesting Germany’s “restrictive drug policies”. It was meant to normalize seeing marijuana plants in everyday life, whether driving to work or taking a stroll around the park. Law enforcement saw it as an act of civil disobedience and were able to remove the plants, after green youth took pictures (and even had a photo contest on who had the best bud). No one was arrested for the incident.
Another rally through central Berlin, called the Marijuana Parade, started at the central railway station before moving to the Federal Health Ministry and then to the iconic Alexanderplatz. People carried banners with slogans stating, “My brain belongs to me,” “Cannabis is my medicine”, and “We aren’t criminals, we’re gardeners.” Organizers said, “The marijuana parade is the largest demonstration for the legalization of Cannabis as commodity, medicine, and natural stimulant in Germany.”
According to police, about 4,000 people took part in the parade with no incidents or arrests reported.
Many German people have stated that their pot laws are too strict. If activists could convince the government to see how much marijuana helps people, this could happen. For now, we will just have to wait and see. Until then I say” Kampf weiter” (Fight on!).