Family protesting against austerity cuts outside Downing Street.

Family protesting against austerity cuts outside Downing Street.

By Richard Shrubb

Thanks to Tory austerity cuts it seems that the Met Police are cutting down on the crimes they investigate.

There are still far too many people being done for cannabis offences – an estimated one million police hours nationwide every year. This could mean that a policeman is more interested in the presence of weed in your pocket than the fact you’ve reporting being robbed.

Police hours and weed

In 2017 the Liberal Democrats reported that some 1,044,180 police man hours were spent investigating cannabis offences and this cost the government £31 million. Earlier this year a key Lib Dem Norman Lamb told the Guardian that weed investigations had fallen by around 34%. This would still put a whopping £20 million a year and 666,000 police man hours into investigating people for the possession of a rather benign recreational drug

Austerity cuts to the Met

The drop in police cannabis man hours is in a large part down to the lack of resources available to deal with crime in the UK. Last week the Times reported, “Burglaries, low-level assaults, criminal damage, theft and affray are all on a list of crimes that can be dismissed without being investigated under a policy secretly introduced by the Metropolitan Police last year.”

The Murdoch (paywall) owned newspaper continued, “The dropped reports account for 29.6 per cent of crimes reported to the Met.”

Easy meat

UK policewoman at a weed bust.

Taxpayers’ money being wasted by the police taking down the world’s most useful plant.

We all see this at all levels of government – where a bureaucrat is desperate to get their numbers up they will pick low hanging fruit or easy meat. Whether a social worker who couldn’t find a paedo if his dick was between her butt cheeks or a policeman of such high IQ he can even tie his own shoelaces, they all go after the easy meat. This means that they will go after sick people who grow/use weed for personal use.

Last week, my colleague at Feed the Birds Chris Bovey reported, “David Ian Bateman was forced to plead guilty to growing six plants that he was growing to self-medicate to treat anxiety. He was placed on a 12-month community order and must carry out 180 hours of unpaid work as well as pay £85 costs and an £85 surcharge. His defence solicitor had to spout the usual bullshit to the Magistrates how his client’s life has now changed and he was now drug-free just to get him off with him a small fine and forced unpaid labour.

Hundreds like this guy are being busted every year, even where they are being done for using cannabis in circumstances where other countries and US states allow it to be used. Cancer-induced anorexia? Take these expensive, shitty pills or run the risk of spending your weakening dying days doing slave labour. Fitting a lot? Between your fits find some time to go to court and pay a £360 in fines for using something that actually stops the fits.

Medical cannabis? My arse

The neoliberal media will be gleefully telling you that medical cannabis is available on the NHS. My arse – on the 5th November the Mirror reported, 9-year-old Teagan Appleby’s mum said she still hasn’t got a prescription for it – despite being treated in the Evelina London Children’s Hospital after suffering up to 300 seizures a day. It’s claimed Teagan is a victim of strict rules, introduced just hours before medical cannabis became legal, from both the NHS and the British Paediatric Neurology Association.

The law is tighter than a nun’s minge on this front, meaning only very few people will be prescribed a cannabis medication in the UK under the current laws.

Your best hope if you need medical weed? You need to dance with the devil on this one – you need to risk prosecution just as if Billy Caldwell hadn’t caused the government to make a fuss of legalising in the first place. Good luck in all you do.

Police are ignoring a third of all crimes after a single call, including burglaries, assaults & vandalism, while one million man-hours are wasted on weed.

Richard Shrubb

Richard is a marijuana, water sports and electric vehicles writer based in Dorchester, Dorset. Living in Prince Charles model housing estate, Poundbury, he is an avowed republican, community and Labour Party activist. Visit his website at for more about what he does.

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