Local mums fight to legalise medical marijuana


Mother of three Christine Mackay has struggled to manage her seven-year-old daughter’s rare epileptic disorder.

As a last resort Mrs Mackay has been replacing Casey’s prescription medication with cannabis tincture and hemp oil for the past seven months, and the results have been miraculous.

“Casey has an epileptic disorder that presents with seizures, regression of cognitive, behavioral and motor skills, and an increase in autistic traits,” she said.

Christine Mackay with daughter Casey. Photo: Emma McCluney

“[My husband and I] were at a point where we’d gone through so many other medications that either didn’t change her condition or made it much worse.

“Her quality of life just plummeted. It was at the desperation stage. The doctors were running out of options and we were feeling desperate.”

After only four days the Mackays began to notice a change in their daughter’s behavior.

“[Casey’s] school said impulse control had improved and she was beginning to eat properly. She was making speech up on her own without mimicking us…whole conversations she was having just blew us away,” she said.

Despite the positive impact the drug has had on Casey’s life as well as the support from the local government using cannabis for medical purposes is still illegal.

“It can treat so many illnesses. It would replace so many medications,” she said.

“I like to be optimistic but it’s been a five year long roller-coaster of nightmares and we’ve come out of it over the past seven months and things have been better than they’ve ever been….[but] we just don’t know what’s around the corner.”

Even though Casey and many others have claimed to have benefited from the drug, general practitioner Doctor Robyn Travers believes medicinal cannabis will not become legal anytime soon.

“The medical profession is still not supporting it because of the lack of clear evidence in relation to the benefits outweighing the potential risks,” she said.

“There is a big push and it is possible…but it will not be legal anytime in the near future”.


Emma McCluney

I am a journalist working in Australia with a passion for community radio, broadcast production, writing quality news stories and freelance photography.

You can catch me on-air on the Bay Drive show 100.3 Bay FM every Friday afternoon from 4:00-6:00pm.

Follow me on Twitter @emmamccluney

1 Comment

  1. I heard about this through JJJ a little while ago. The reactions seemed fairly positive especially since the THC can be removed from the medicinal product and the public are more in favor of it than ever before.

    I guess that doesn’t change the fact that it still needs to get through the same old politicians whose arguments haven’t changed this entire time. They’re still asking; “how will we regulate who grows it?” when we grow tobacco and all sorts of other drugs just fine.

    Nice article though.

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