London Belongs To Me.

     

My Friends,

I'm Lee Harris - and I want to be London's first pro-cannabis Mayor.

I am calling upon all of you who wish to see London's authorities engage with the issue of cannabis, to help me collect 10 signatures from each borough from people who are registered to vote. 

It is time we acknowledged the failed prohibitionist drugs policies of this city and started to explore alternatives. 

Peace and love,

Lee

 

 

 

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General Election 2015 Manifesto

  1. The 50 years long so-called ‘War on Drugs’ has been lost. It has caused far more suffering than it ever alleviated.
  2. All over the world, governments are successfully implementing an array of new policy approaches as an alternative to prohibition.
  3. In the UK the stasis in our public policy is radically at odds with the rest of the world. The consequences are borne by taxpayers, individuals and wider society.
  4. CISTA is proposing a new approach to drug reform, starting with cannabis, one that is evidence-based, cross-party, humane and non partisan.
  5. Our proposals, upon implementation, will do less harm, reduce human suffering and minimise the damage caused to the victims of drug-related crime and consumers of drugs.

Read more…

32 Candidates

Louis Jensen

Aberavon

Jay Kirton

Aberavon

It's not just CISTA - the following people agree with cannabis reform

Voted 219 - 189 to prevent the Justice Department from interfering with state medical marijuana laws.
U.S. House of Representatives
“I don't think marijuana should be illegal.”
Jon StewartTV Host, Comedian & Actor
“With calls for Congress to end the federal war on marijuana, it's currently estimated that the annual revenue that would be raised in California if it taxed and regulated the sale of marijuana would be $1,400,000,000! The work that could be done with those funds in providing a progressive approach could have an incredibly positive impact on those communities worst affected.”
Richard BransonFounder & Chairman of Virgin Group
“Indeed, far from reducing crime, prohibition has fostered gangsterism on a scale that the world has never seen before... Legalisation would not only drive away the gangsters; it would transform drugs from a law-and-order problem into a public-health problem, which is how they ought to be treated.”
The EconomistEditorial Board
“I think that most small amounts of marijuana have been decriminalized in some places, and should be. We really need a re-examination of our entire policy on imprisonment.”
Bill Clinton42nd President of the United States
“The main point in [our] report was to recommend decriminalization...because of the way laws are applied, which have not worked. We have applied them for decades and it's got the prisons filled with lots of young people who sometimes come out destroyed for having half an ounce... [W]e should approach it through education [and] health issues rather than a brutal reaction... There is need for change in policy, but it has to start with debate and discussion... I think the whole approach has to be reviewed.”
Kofi AnnanFormer Secretary-General of United Nations
“The federal government should repeal the ban on marijuana... [W]e believe that on every level - health effects, the impact on society and law-and-order issues - the balance falls squarely on the side of national legalization. That will put decisions on whether to allow recreational or medicinal production and use where it belongs - at the state level... The social costs of the marijuana laws are vast. There were 658,000 arrests for marijuana possession in 2012... [I]t is long past time to repeal this version of Prohibition.”
New York TimesEditorial Board
“Countries should work toward developing policies and laws that decriminalize injection and other use of drugs and, thereby, reduce incarceration.”
World Health OrganizationUnited Nations' Health Agency
“[Under marijuana legalization, drug traffickers] are going to make a lot less money, and some of the perverse things about the illegal drug trade will be avoided.”
Bill GatesFounder of Microsoft
“Middle-class kids don't get locked up for smoking pot, and poor kids do... We should not be locking up kids or individual users for long stretches of jail time when some of the folks who are writing those laws have probably done the same thing. It's important for [the legalization of marijuana in Colorado and Washington] to go forward because it's important for society not to have a situation in which a large portion of people have at one time or another broken the law and only a select few get punished.”
Barack Obama44th President of the United States
“[T]o be successful in our drug policies, health services must provide a comprehensive package known as harm reduction... Instead, the best people who use drugs can hope for is to be driven underground to live with the addiction in the dark back streets and abandoned buildings of our towns and cities. Or even worse, they are criminalized and jailed with little or no regard for their healthcare rights or the impact of this policy on the health of their communities... [D]rug use is a health issue. It is an issue of human rights. It cannot be condoned, but neither should it be criminalized.”
International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent SocietiesWorld's Largest Humanitarian Network
“[F]illing prisons with users, each given a criminal stain on his or her record, has long been irrational. For [this] reason, we favor decriminalizing possession of small amounts of pot, assessing civil fines instead of locking people up.”
Washington PostEditorial Board
“I support decriminalisation. People are smoking pot anyway and to make them into criminals is wrong. It's when you're in jail you really become a criminal.”
Paul McCartneyGrammy Award-Winning Musician
“Latin American leaders, weary of the drug war, are calling for an important discussion on drug legalization. The U.S. should not turn away.”
Los Angeles TimesEditorial Board
“I don't take any mood-altering substances -- not even refined sugar! Well, OK, I'll have up to two cups of coffee, but only before noon... I don't drink alcohol. But hell, if you want to change your state of mind with a chemical, it's your goddamned state of mind to change. What liberty could be more fundamental than the liberty to choose how you think? Taking mood-altering substances is, in and of itself, victimless (though the drug trade that's sustained by drug prohibition has plenty of victims, and people can certainly destroy their lives with drugs, a tragedy that is vastly exacerbated by prohibition)... As far as I'm concerned, everything that we call "drugs"...should be legalized and brought into the light of day so that the people who have problems with them can get help without the stigma of criminality and so that the people who don't have problems with them can get on with doing their thing.”
Cory DoctorowBlogger at Boing Boing & Author
“If you were waging any other war where you have 2,000 fatalities a year, your enemies are making billions in profits, constantly throwing new weapons at you and targeting more young people -- you'd have to say you are losing and itblahs time to do something different. I'm anti-drugs -- it's for that reason I'm pro reform.”
Nick CleggDeputy Prime Minister of the United Kingdom
“I don't think the campaigns of the government in this country or America are doing anything. I think it's an absolute waste of resources, the way they're going about it. You go to clubs, everybody's taking stuff, that's how it is. Most lawyers have inhaled, they've had a joint... Then they carry on with their lives.”
Ringo StarrGrammy Award-Winning Musician
“One of the reasons legalisation passed [in Colorado and Washington] was the failure of the status quo. If the main aim of drug policy is to reduce consumption, prohibition has not worked. It has arguably been counterproductive, putting a lucrative trade into the hands of violent gangs, saddling millions of people with criminal records, expending vast amounts of money and distracting attention from harm reduction. This has been obvious for years...”
New ScientistEditorial Board
“The evidence demonstrates a connection between therapeutic use of marijuana and symptom relief. The American Nurses Association actively supports patients' rights to legally and safely utilize marijuana for symptom management and health care practitioners' efforts to promote quality of life for patients needing such therapy.”
American Nurses AssociationRepresenting America's 3.1 Million Nurses
“Rather than stopping violence, prohibition fuels it. Most drug violence is caused by turf wars, not users committing petty crimes to finance their habit. Traffickers cannot rely on the courts to resolve disputes so they swap lawyers for guns... [L]egalization has public health benefits: drug deaths in Portugal fell after decriminalization. With the threat of arrest removed, users are more likely to seek treatment. A legal supply chain also allows quality control.”
Financial TimesEditorial Board
Endorsed Washington's Initiative 502 to Legalize Marijuana
Children's AllianceA Voice for Washington's Children, Youth & Families
“Penalizing people for possession of drugs is costly and expensive... A good number of times I was arrested was simply for possession and the administrative costs of that would be better spent, I think, on education and addressing the costs of treatment.”
Russell BrandComedian, Actor & Recovering Addict
“We have spent a trillion dollars. It's lasted for over 40 years. A lot of people have lost their lives for it... It's an incredible failure... [T]he drug war is actually being used to hold a portion of our society down... It's criminal in itself... The only way to end the war on drugs is to take the profit out of it... [W]e have to look at the what-if-everything-was-legal and people were allowed to make their own choices... If you decriminalize, then they could control the quality... And I would propose you would have fewer deaths.”
Brad PittActor & Film Producer
“Human beings seem to have a propensity to want to take drugs in some form... Thousands of years people have taken drugs, whether it's alcohol which was invented about 5,000 years ago. People have been using that, and all kinds of marijuana and all these things, tobacco... [Y]ou get violence in some countries producing...like we have in Mexico now, and you get violence at the other end of people trying to obtain drugs... [T]hat's the part that speaks to some sort of legalization. Because that you would hope would help the violence from both ends of the supply line.”
Mick JaggerGrammy Award-Winning Musician
"For years, the Drug War has been used as a pretext to lock people in prison for exorbitant lengths of time … civil liberties have been trampled. Law enforcement has been militarized. Literally hundreds of billions of dollars -- dollars denied to urgent problems ranging from poverty to pollution -- have been spent. People who do need help with drugs have been treated as criminals instead. Meanwhile, resources to fight genuine crime -- violent crime -- have been significantly diminished. And in exchange for all this, the War on Drugs has not stopped people from using drugs or kept drugs from crossing the borders or being sold on the streets."
Stingmusician and actor
"If drugs were legally and safely available through chemist shops, and if their use was governed by the same provisions as govern alcohol purchase and consumption, the main platform for organised crime would be removed, and thereby one large obstacle to the welfare of society.”
A C GraylingPhilosopher
"I strongly believe that we should focus on public health approaches to the drug problem, and decriminalise the possession of drugs for personal use, for the following simple reason - If users are addicted then they are ill, and criminal sanctions are an inappropriate way to deal with an illness. If they are not addicted then criminalisation will almost always lead to greater harms to the user than the effects of the drug."
Professor David NuttFormer Chair of the Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs and Edmond J. Safra Chair of the Department of Neuropsychopharmacology at Imperial College, London
“We need proper regulation and investment if we are to get to the root of the battle with drugs.”
Tom BrakeLiberal Democrat MP
“It all seemed so pointless; what were we achieving? The enthusiastically spun revolving door of criminal justice took in and spat out users and dealers, often addicts themselves, to deal again. Men and women, arrested for little more than youthful experimentation, emerged with lives forever tainted by a conviction.”
Tom LloydFormer Chief Constable, Cambridgeshire
‘The legalisation of cannabis is both a human rights and health issue...Criminalisation is inhibiting access to one of the world's most effective natural drugs.’
Peter TatchellActivist
"We need to take effective measures to rob the dealers of their markets and the only way that we can do that is by supplying addicts through the medical profession, through prescription. We cannot afford to be shy about being prepared to do that. It is far better they are going to a doctor, or going to a chemist and are getting their script [prescription] than turning tricks as a prostitute or robbing their mates."
Bob AinsworthLabour MP
‘Let’s openly acknowledge what we already know: the UK’s drug laws are outdated, ineffective, and enormously costly. The evidence shows that, as a first step, treating drug addiction as a health issue, rather than a criminal one, would significantly reduce the social and individual harms associated with criminalisation. It’s time to face up to the facts: the system is broken and it’s time for reform.’
Caroline LucasMP
‘Having spent most of my own youth completely disenfranchised from wider society, ending up as a political prisoner, I deeply care for this cause. The "War on Drugs" not only unnecessarily criminalises our youth, but statistics point to the fact that it disproportionately targets young people from diverse ethnic backgrounds like mine, driving them further to the fringes of our society. It's high time we approached drug abuse through a liberal health lens, not an illiberal criminal one.’
Maajid NawazExecutive Director, Quilliam
‘The UN Office on Drugs and Crime recognizes that drug addiction is a health problem and not a crime. I urge the UK Government to heed the UN position and to decriminalise the possession and use of drugs. This policy has been shown to work and to reduce drug addiction among young people.’
Baroness Molly MeacherChair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Drug Policy Reform

You choose where we stand candidates

Vote now for where you want us to stand

constituency party majority members
  Belfast East Alliance 4.45%
  Belfast South SDLP 17.33% 2
  Belfast West SF 54.71% 1
  Belfast North DUP 6.01% 2
  North Down Ind 42.9%
  Cities of London and Westminster C 29.99% 1
  South Down SDLP 19.75% 2
  Manchester Central Lab 26.15%
  Brighton, Kemptown C 3.11% 2
  South Antrim DUP 3.48% 2
full list of constituencies

Why a new political party?

We are a brand new political party with the ambition of building a broad-based community of candidates and members.

We want your help, not only to break stereotypes and show that everyday people are backing changes to cannabis laws, but to build a sustainable platform for real change.

CISTA realises that we have to transform our arguments into votes. For CISTA, winning votes can be as simple as signing up for free to become a member, and informing family, friends and coworkers about what we aim to achieve. We won’t stop there. We will offer all of our members the opportunity to join us on Britain's streets handing out leaflets and winning grassroots votes. So sign up below to receive updates and campaign materials as we prepare to go on the campaign trail.

Decades of criminalising use of cannabis have failed on every front. Across the world, countries are properly redrafting laws relating to cannabis use with benefits for the economy, public health and levels of crime. CISTA exists to replicate this success. Our candidates during the 2015 Elections will be campaigning for a Royal Commission to review Britain’s drug laws.

We want to attract candidates from right across the country and in every constituency.

CISTA expects to enlist the support of academics, existing campaigners, students, people who work or have experience of working in the criminal justice system, as well as people from an array of traditional political backgrounds.

We expect to attract candidates from all demographic groups and build a party that actually represents modern Britain.

We will contest every seat honestly and openly. We will present evidence to support our case with confidence. Our candidates will engage with other candidates in a respectful and constructive manner. We have an open and transparent constitution.

We acknowledge that, in order to achieve our aims, we must persuade the representatives of other parties, therefore candidates should conduct themselves in a manner befitting the trust we place in them.