A virtual national ganja literacy forum entitled ‘Good Ganja Sense’ was hosted by the University of Technology Jamaica on Tuesday, March 9th to educate and promote the health and wellness of society through the proper use of the cannabis.
The literacy forum entitled ‘Good Ganja Sense’ touched on everything from the medical, scientific and therapeutic uses of the drug, as well as to deflate misconceptions concerning the use of ganja. One such misconception is that ganja is the most abused drug. According to guest panelist Paulette Smith, Director of Cooperate Services with the National Council on Drug Abuse, it is not. The years prior to 2015, the year when ganja was decriminalized, persons were widely dissuaded from using the drug to any degree, but with new research being done, results prove that ‘ganja full a uses’.
Dr. Neville Ballin spoke on the medical use of Cannabis on different illnesses and pain, through different clinical case studies. Dr. Ballin believes that the plant could possibly reduce pain under certain medical conditions and organ response. Though still in clinical trial, cannabis has reduced but not completely stopped, epilepsy and insomnia in some patients.
With Cannabis now decriminalized, Faith Graham, Acting Senior Director of Operations advised persons interested in Cannabis farming to obtain a permit in which there are three license type; cultivating, processing and transport. People who wish to obtain the plant for medical and therapeutic reasons can acquire the plant at a retail herb house with a permit handed out by the Ministry of Health, prompted by a prescription written by a medical practitioner in the possession of a valid permit to practice in the specialized area.
Paulette Smith, Director of Cooperate Services with Nation Council of Drug Abuse spoke on the history of the plant and its decriminalization in Jamaica. She highlighted the importance of educating youth through a program that offers peer leadership training and education through engagement of community influencers and family members as well as story books and games in an attempt to dissuade poor use of the plant.
The forum was moderated by Saudicka Diaram and supported by the Ministry of Health and Wellness. Guest speakers included Michael Tucker, Executive Director of National Council of Drug Abuse, who introduced the topic and highlighted the importance of proper use of the plant. Professor Colin Gyles, Acting President of the University of Technology, Jamaica and Collette Kirlew Director of Client Services of the National Council On Drug Abuse. Another forum entitled ‘Women in Ganja’ will be held on March 16, 2021.
Reported by Daneil Creary