Inquiry into the Use of Cannabis in Victoria

Terms of Reference

On 30 May 2019, the Legislative Council agreed to the following motion:

That this house, requires the Legal and Social Issues Committee to inquire into, consider and report, by no later than 2 March 2020, into the best means to — 

  1. prevent young people and children from accessing and using cannabis in Victoria;
  2. protect public health and public safety in relation to the use of cannabis in Victoria;
  3. implement health education campaigns and programs to ensure children and young people are aware of the dangers of drug use, in particular, cannabis use;
  4. prevent criminal activity relating to the illegal cannabis trade in Victoria;
  5. assess the health, mental health, and social impacts of cannabis use on people who use cannabis, their families and carers;

and further requires the Committee to assess models from international jurisdictions that have been successful in achieving these outcomes and consider how they may be adapted for Victoria.

pdfTerms of Reference - Inquiry into the use of Cannabis in Victoria337.68 KB

* The reporting date for this inquiry has been changed to 1 June 2021.

Government Response

The Government is required to respond within six months of the report being tabled. Once the response is received, it will be available for download here.


The reporting date for this inquiry has been extended 1 June 2021. Once the report is tabled in Parliament, an electronic copy will be available for download here.

Hearings and Transcripts

Information on the Committee's public hearing schedule for this inquiry will be posted here as it becomes available.

Corrected transcripts of these hearings will also be published here when finalised by the Committee.

Wednesday, 28 April 2021
Howard Whittaker Conference Room, George Kerferd Hotel, Beechworth VIC 3747

Time Witness Transcript
10:00 am Gateway Health
Leigh Rhode, Chief Executive Officer
Maryanne Donnellan, Program Manager AOD

 pdfPresentation1.45 MB
10:45 am Victorian Aboriginal Legal Service
Kin Leong, Principal Managing Lawyer, Criminal Law Practice

11:30 am The Centre for Continuing Education (Wangaratta)
Felicity Williams, Chief Executive Officer
Trent Jones, Learner Engagement Officer
Kerri Barnes, Project Manager, Finding Strength

12:15 pm Odyssey House Victoria
Andrew Hick, Manager, Circuit Breaker program



Wednesday, 21 April 2021
via Zoom
Link to live Broadcast

Time Witness Transcript
10:00 am Turning Point and Monash Addiction Research Centre
Professor Dan Lubman AM
Executive Clinical Director, Turning Point,
Director, Monash Addiction Research Centre, Monash University

Dr Christine Grove
Senior Lecturer, Educational Psychology and Inclusive Education,
Monash University
pdfTranscript138.94 KB 
10:45 am Students for Sensible Drug Policy Australia (SSDP Aus)
Gulliver McLean
Research & Advocacy Officer

Julia Daly
Operations Manager

Jesse Colling
Victorian Campus Teams Manager

pdfTranscript225.47 KB

pdfPresentation720.10 KB

11:30 am Harm Reduction Victoria
Sione Crawford
Chief Executive Officer

Stephanie Tzanetis
DanceWize Program Director
Harm Reduction Victoria Management Team
pdfTranscript225.29 KB
1:15 pm Panel - NZ Witnesses
SHORE & Whariki Research Centre
Associate Professor Chris Wilkins
Leader, Drug Research Team

Dr Marta Rychert
Senior Researcher

New Zealand Drug Foundation
Sarah Helm
Executive Director

Stephen Blyth
Communications Manager

pdfTranscript255.91 KB

pdfPresentation766.91 KB

2:30 pm Australian Drug Law Reform Foundation
Dr Alex Wodak
pdfTranscript217.37 KB
3:30 pm Penington Institute
John Ryan
Chief Executive Officer

Dr Karen Gelb
Senior Research and Policy Officer
 pdfTranscript222.52 KB


Thursday, 25 March 2021
Meeting Rooms G.1 & G.2, 55 St Andrews Place, East Melbourne
Link to live Broadcast

Time Witness Transcript
9.15 am Tamar Todd, 
Lecturer, Berkeley Law & Former Legal Director, Drug Policy Alliance
pdfTranscript154.60 KB
10.00 am Smart Approaches to Marijuana
Dr Kevin Sabet,

pdfTranscript237.76 KB

pdfPresentation4.75 MB

10.45 am Victorian Alcohol and Drug Association
Sam Biondo
Executive Director

David Taylor
Policy and Media

pdfTranscript239.17 KB

pdfResponse to QON1.52 MB

pdfResponse to QON1.44 MB


11.45 am Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists
(Victorian branch)

Dr Shalini Arunogiri
Chair, RANZCP Faculty of Addiction Psychiatry

pdfTranscript239.88 KB

pdfResponse to QON107.46 KB

pdfResponse to QON6.64 MB

pdfResponse to QON446.03 KB

pdfResponse to QON1.54 MB

pdfResponse to QON346.89 KB

1.30 pm Burnet Institute
Associate Professor Peter Higgs
Burnet Senior Fellow

Ashleigh Stewart
Research Assistant

pdfTranscript269.63 KB

pdfPresentation4.16 MB

2.30 pm Dalgarno Institute
Shane Varcoe
Executive Director, Operations

Eleni Arapoglou
pdfTranscript232.67 KB
3.15 pm Alcohol and Drug Foundation
Dr Erin Lalor
Chief Executive Officer

Jill Karena
State Manager, Victoria and Tasmania

Laura Bajurny
Information Officer

pdfTranscript235.89 KB

pdfResponse to QON1.70 MB

pdfResponse to QON3.86 MB