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Swiss Advocacy Group Campaigns for Full-Scale Cannabis Legalization

Switzerland’s “Legalize It” organization submitted a new proposal to regulate and tax the sale of recreational marijuana.

by Zach Harris

A new advocacy campaign in Switzerland hopes to end cannabis prohibition and create a taxed and regulated nation-wide industry. 

Currently, cannabis containing less than 1% THC is legal and sold over the counter in the notoriously neutral country, but any bud that will actually get you high can still land you a 100 franc fine or jail time if you’re holding more than nine grams.

According to Swiss newspaper The Local, the new proposal would be similar to American single state efforts to legalize, with a taxed and regulated retail system making THC-full weed available in the same manner as alcohol or tobacco.

The Swiss legalization effort is spearheaded by the “Legalize It” advocacy group, the same group that unsuccessfully tried to push cannabis reform in 2008. However, the organization has learned from its mistakes and the successes of others, and has presented a much more comprehensive proposal this time around. 

“The ban on cannabis is wrong from a social perspective, wrong from a legal point of view and simply stupid from an economic point of view.” Legalize It spokesperson Nino Forrer told Swiss newspaper Tages Anzeiger.

If the group can get 100,000 signatures supporting their proposal in the next 18 months the suggestion would then turn into a popular initiative referendum. And with researchers estimating that Switzerland is home to roughly 500,000 cannabis users, it seems only a matter of time before Zurich turns into the next international cannabis hotspot.


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Zach Harris is a writer based in Philadelphia whose work has appeared on Noisey, First We Feast, and Jenkem Magazine. You can find him on Twitter @10000youtubes complaining about NBA referees.



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