The legalization of cannabis continues to stir controversy in the Belgian political debate. Belgium’s deputy prime minister, Pierre-Yves Dermagne, in an interview with Belgian media, said legalization is a matter of common sense that will allow the country to more effectively address its drug and public safety challenges.
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Pierre-Yves Dermagne and his position on cannabis legalization in Belgium
Pierre-Yves Dermagne, who represents the Belgian Socialist Party and is currently in charge of the labor and economy ministries, discussed various current political issues in the country during an interview with De Morgen newspaper. One of the main topics was the legalization of cannabis and its potential impact on society and public safety.
“The legalization of cannabis is a solution to the problem of drugs and safety in our cities,” Dermagne said.
The Belgian deputy prime minister justifies his support for legalization on the failure of current repressive measures. Dermagne is keeping a close eye on regulatory initiatives in neighboring countries such as Germany, the Czech Republic, the Netherlands, and Luxembourg, and considers it a priority action for him and his party.
Cannabis legalization in Belgium is a matter of common sense
Dermagne stressed that current methods of combating cannabis use are not working. Legalization would allow regulating the cultivation and sale of the substance, which would generate revenue for the state. These funds could be used for police, justice, and prevention.
However, Dermagne also recognizes the risks associated with cannabis consumption, especially in terms of health. Nevertheless, he stresses the need for a realistic approach to legalization. The minister argues that cannabis is widely accepted in today’s society, and banning it is not an effective solution. Instead, legalization would allow for better control over production and distribution, which would weaken the black market associated with illegal substances.
For the minister, it’s mostly a matter of common sense, which he also emphasized in his tweet, in which he calls for “an end to the hypocrisy around cannabis,” arguing that the best way to control cannabis is to regulate it.
As for his preference for legalization models, Dermagne does not consider the Dutch system of Coffee shops ideal, but he is following with interest the German model, which involves citizens being able to band together in associations to grow and purchase cannabis.
The minister of Belgium acknowledged that he will face resistance from many parties, but stressed that legalizing cannabis is a priority for his party in terms of public health and safety. Dermagne is confident that support for the initiative is growing, including among young people in the Flemish Liberal party.
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First published in Fakty Konopne, a third-party contributor translated and adapted the article from the original. In case of discrepancy, the original will prevail.
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