Nimbin’s HEMP Embassy is organising a peaceful protest about the impact saliva testing drivers is having on cannabis users.
Hemp Embassy president Michael Balderstone said organisers were expecting a large turn-out as ‘a lot of people are really angry about this new saliva testing’.
The protest will take place outside the Lismore Police Station from 10am on Monday, 21 December.
‘We get phone calls every day at the HEMP Embassy from upset people who have lost their licence and sometimes their job as well.
Echonetdaily reported last week that one in six drivers tested for drugs during a police operation in the Tweed/Byron Local Area Command returned positive readings.
It’s understood that another police blitz is expected to take place in the region from December 18 to January 3.
Mr Balderstone said Monday’s protest would enable people to share their experiences.
‘There will be speakers at the protest telling their stories and others are welcome,” he said.
‘The saliva cannabis test is for any amount no matter how minuscule and that means drivers who smoked a joint days before are being busted.
‘We all know it’s below the belt but the Deputy Premier and NSW Police Minister Troy Grant is an old school ex cop who thinks it’s illegal and that’s that.”
‘One consequence he may not have realised is that it encourages drivers to use other far more dangerous drugs that are out of your system and saliva by the next morning.
‘Cannabis is uniquely fat soluble and stays in our blood for months, our urine for weeks and our saliva for days.’
‘The saliva testing combined with sniffer dogs has dramatically altered drug use trends for the worse”
‘No other country is testing cannabis like this and no other country has prohibited eating hemp seed which the police maintain affects their tests. This has never been trialled or tested.
‘The new drug driver testing is a serious case of bullying by the police as they know Cannabis users can test positive days after using their medicine.’