At the national level, slow progress has been made with regard to cannabis legalization. Now the canton of Solothurn is signaling that more could happen: On 06 September 2022, the cantonal parliament has sent a state initiative to the federal government.
The canton of Soltothurn thus demands, analogous to PI Siegenthaler, a legalization of cultivation, trade and consumption of cannabis containing THC.
Why a standing initiative?
The question of the usefulness of such a standing initiative was one of the main arguments of the minority that rejected the bill in the Solothurn cantonal parliament. In fact, the Siegenthaler PI includes the same requirements. In addition, it has also already initiated the same process that is also triggered by the stand initiative. The health committees of the National Council and Council of States must consider the bill and, if they approve the process, prepare a draft bill for parliament.
Even though a bill for cannabis legalization is now already being drafted thanks to PI Siegenthaler, there are reasons for such a standing initiative. It is an opportunity that the canton of Solothurn could use to point out to Federal Berne that legalization is desired and that the processes should be faster.
The demand was initiated in the canton of Solothurn in May 2020. After a collection of signatures by the FDP, a “people’s mandate” was submitted, which demanded legalization from the cantonal government. Since a cantonal solo action seems neither sensible nor possible, the stand initiative was probably the only sensible instrument for making this demand from the population heard.
– Solothurn government supports legalization of cannabis (solothurnerzeitung.ch)
– Solothurn smoke signals to Bern (Solothurner Zeitung)
– Solothurn cantonal council wants to legalize cannabis (SRF Audio)