A mother has had cannabis oil taken from her as she arrived at Heathrow airport this morning. Charlotte Caldwell tried to bring the drug into the UK for her sick son but it was confiscated by customs officers. One of them had tears in his eyes as he took possession of the oil. Charlotte who flew in from Canada, where she bought the oil, wasn't cautioned. Her twelve year-old son Billy, was prescribed medicinal cannabis oil last year to help treat his epilepsy. He had been suffering from hundreds of seizures a day.
Charlotte told reporters at Heathrow that customs officers behaved like gentlemen and confirmed that one of them even had tears in his eyes as the oil was taken from her. "I'll just go back to Canada and I'll get more and I'll bring it back again," she said. Billy, who has autism and intractable epilepsy, became the first patient in Britain to be prescribed medicinal cannabis on the NHS after enduring up to 100 seizures a day and routinely ending up in hospital. He was originally given the treatment by a doctor in the US, where it is legal in the majority of states. Charlotte said it stopped Billy’s seizures and immediately improved his quality of life.
But only last month the Home Office told her family doctor to stop providing the drug or face being struck off. She was horrified. She flew to Canada last Thursday to stock up on the medicine (at great expense no doubt) and arrived back this morning with a six month supply only to have it confiscated. The family has been let down badly by the government who had promised to make the medicine available to them here in the UK. What a farce. Regular listeners to the RA Show will remember my interviews with Vera Twomey, whose daughter Ava had her life transformed by the oil. Vera made regular trips to Holland if you recall. I also recently spoke with Alfie Dingley's mother Hannah (Alfie has rare epilepsy too) about her difficulties in petitioning the UK authorities to make the medicine available.
I won't over-egg the pudding here. This is a tyranny. We KNOW that this medicine works and transforms lives, overnight in so many cases. We know this. We know that it is harmless, that it has NO SIDE-EFFECTS and that it is NOT ADDICTIVE. We also know that apart from its remarkable results in treating seizures, it has proved hugely effective in treating a wide spectrum of other illnesses INCLUDING CANCER. Maybe that's why there is so much opposition to it from government. I'm sure the pharma lobbies are working overtime to prevent this becoming widely available. And it is a tyranny, that some bureaucrat, some no-mark jobsworth can tell you what you can and cannot take, especially when taking it will save your life or the life of your child.