Canna~Fangled Abstracts

Children as voices and images for medicinal cannabis law reform

By October 31, 2021November 1st, 2021No Comments

doi: 10.1007/s40592-021-00139-z.

Online ahead of print.


This article situates the movement for the legalisation of medicinal cannabis within the bigger picture of the impetus toward recreational cannabis legalisation. It describes the role played by children with epileptic syndromes in the medicinal cannabis law reform campaigns in the United Kingdom, and Queensland, New South Wales and Victoria in Australia. Noting the ‘rule of rescue’ and the prominence in media campaigns of children in Australian and English cases of parental disputation with clinicians about treatment for their children, it reviews whether paediatric epilepsy is a suitable test case for the legalisation of medicinal cannabis. Taking into account the vested commercial interests of Big Cannabis, the current medico-scientific knowledge of the efficacy of medicinal cannabis in controlling paediatric epileptic seizures, and issues of dignity, health privacy, and the enduring digital footprints of media coverage, the article commences discussion about the ethics of the media, parents, politicians and entrepreneurial doctors utilising parents’ testimonials about the effects of medicinal cannabis as part of the cannabis law reform movement.


Keywords: Cannabis legalisation, Children as voices, Ethical issues, Law reform, Medical marijuana, Medicinal cannabis, Paediatric epilepsy


    1. Aguirre-Velazquez, C.G. 2017. Report from a survey of parents regarding the use of cannabidiol (medicinal cannabis) in Mexican children with refractory epilepsy. Neurology Research International. Accessed October 20 2021. 2021 . – DOI
    1. Andaloro, S. 2020. Parents hail 10-month-old’s response to cannabis oil treatment as “amazing”. 7 News. Accessed October 20, 2021,… .
    1. Aran, A., and Cayam-Rand. 2020. Medical cannabis in children. Ramban Mainomides Medical Journal 11 (1): e0003. . – DOI
    1. Arnold, J.C., T. Nation, and I.S. McGregor. 2020. Prescribing medicinal cannabis. Australian Prescriber 43: 152–159. – DOI
    1. Asadi-Pooya, A.A. 2017. Lennox-Gastaut syndrome: A comprehensive review. Neurological Sciences 39: 403–418. – DOI

Publication types

Leave a Reply

en English