Stowmarket man backs legal cannabis
PUBLISHED: 18:28 25 September 2001 | UPDATED: 10:34 03 March 2010
CRIPPLED by multiple sclerosis, Stowmarket man Stephen Williams has called for the law on cannabis to be straightened out - so he can use it to relieve the pains wracking his body.
CRIPPLED by multiple sclerosis, Stowmarket man Stephen Williams has called for the law on cannabis to be straightened out – so he can use it to relieve the pains wracking his body.
"The law needs to be straightened out," he said. "Everything is still up in the air and something must be done so everyone knows how they stand."
The 51-year-old from St Peters Road spoke out just days after a man with MS was arrested for attempting to open a Amsterdam-style café selling cannabis in Manchester.
Manager Colin Davies had previously achieved notoriety by handing the Queen a bouquet containing cannabis plants.
And Mr Williams, who was diagnosed with MS 15 years ago, said that the Evening Star's story on Felixstowe woman Sheryl Moorey who was arrested for growing cannabis she used to ease her excruciating MS condition also prompted him to air his views.
"It's frustrating for someone in my position," said Mr Williams, who offered himself to a drug company to act as guinea pig for cannabis treatment trials nearly two years ago.
"I've stayed legal for all this time and never touched it. But all the reports show it would be very beneficial for someone like me."
It is still illegal to possess cannabis in Britain, although in some places police will not prosecute for possession, although they will still seize the drug.
"People tell me that I don't look ill. But it's the pains in the arms and legs that people can't see," said Mr Williams, who described the "continuous burning" sensations in his limbs and skin. "I can't get away from it."
"It should be decriminalised so it could be made available for medical use. Opium-based drugs are on the market. Why not something less harmful that than that?"
A former electrical engineer, he was forced to retire from Eastern Electricity through ill health in 1996 and has since used what energy he has to write a history with his partner Sue Cowling on Stowmarket's business families entitled Serving You Through The Years. He is now writing volume two - when his condition allows him.
"I think the law will have to change," he said. "Public opinion is now so stacked against the Government they will have to."