My dad Winston Matthews has been using cannabis my whole life and it has helped him with pain relief due to his broken back and also helped his Hepatitis C. He had Hepatitis C for 15 years before doctors actually diagnosed him, so I cannot stress enough how important it is that everybody is tested for it. It is lucky he stopped drinking alcohol over 10 years ago and became a vegan about 6 years ago, as alcohol and red meat are bad for your liver. We knew how good cannabis was at stopping Winston’s pain, but until he was incarcerated (unethically) we had no idea what it was doing for his Hepatitis C.
My dad was looking healthy for the first time in a few years after undergoing interferon treatment for his Hepatitis C – it takes a while for your body to recover. Unfortunately his treatment did not completely work.
The police raided his bungalow a total of 6 times in the two years in time leading up to his incarceration, each time for personal grows or possession. He has medical reports stating that cannabis is the best medication for him and even has a private script for bedrock but can’t get it in England due to the stupid laws surrounding the Schengen Agreement – this allows anyone from European states where cannabis can be prescribed to come to England and use medicinal cannabis – but English people cannot do the same.
My Dad has been a cannabis activist for many, many years now. When he was arrested in 1987 for possession, he told the police he had so much as he smokes a lot and uses it for pain relief. They tried to convince him that he was mad and said that cannabis had no medicinal value – that he was a cannabis user not a medicinal user. You can see why he became an activist.
In his attempts to educate the world Winston spearhead a local anti soapbar campaigns. He was given leaflets and ideas from the L.C.A, and we gave stickers to people with “No Victim No Crime” printed with a cannabis leaf emblem. We answered questions to the best of our ability to help change the propaganda image portrayed by our government.
Winston volunteered at the Dutch experience in Stockport and helped Chris Baldwin start two coffee shops in Worthing. Called Bongchuffer and Buddies these were an attempt to show the police and politicians that cannabis users were not criminals, but ordinary people. It had an open door policy for over 18s, no alcohol on the premises, and no hard drugs. It was open for about 160 days before the first bust.
Since then Winston has been a hardcore internet activist and has also attended various meetings and protests across the country, he has a wide network of friends – a few of which started the Free Winston Matthews group on Facebook. Big thanks to Clara and Alun who created the group, and to Tina, Hugh, Sanj and Martin, the best group of moderators you could ever ask for. Over 2500 people have joined our cause in the last 13 weeks. Midi intellect has made a viral to high light the cause on youtube “Free Winston Jail bayer Ag – Midi intellect”.
Note from ISMOKE: This song is brilliant, and well worth a listen. Midi Intellect really knows what he’s talking about
The video amazing and to be honest it made me have tears in my eyes watching it and listening to the amazing lyrics Midi had put to it as well – it is both educational and eye-opening. Please watch and share this as Midi Intellect deserves to be huge.
Nol Van Schaik and Peter Lunk have also been a great support from Willie Wortles coffeeshop in Haarlem, Holland ( a must visit ) they ran a Cannalympics in the coffee shops and one event cup was even named after Winston – they referred to him as Sir Bong a lot .
At this moment in time we are trying to get Winston released on HDC (a tag) but as is the way with the system, we are being told one thing then another.
He might also lose his bungalow due to the rules of the Housing trust.
My father Winston Matthews has been imprisoned on Monday 6th Feb for 16 months for growing cannabis.
He has a broken back and Hep C, cannabis is the best thing for him. The courts acknowledged this and still gave him a harsh penalty.
He is on 15 pills a day in prison, Anti spasmodic, anti inflammatory and pain killers, in place of one plant.
The Judges decision was to refuse bail because my Father was getting the best medical care he could need for his situation.
This is surely not the case, as my father has increased stress due to incarceration.
My father is the unhealthiest I have ever seen him.
The system is punishing my father for seeking the best medication for himself.
He may lose his home, all because his human right to be out of pain, has been put it into a unlawful category.
Articles 8,9 and 14 of the Human rights act have been breached.
My father’s cost of incarceration is something to be ridiculed as the only purpose of incarcerating him is to protect him from who, himself ?
The times we are in surly we need to stop wasting money.
So is this right?cost of prison 60k
cost of sativex £7920 for the same 16 months
cost to My Dad Winston to grow his own £480 for 16 months.
savings to the NHS £7440
savings to the tax payer MINUS £60.480.00
not including court and police time ….Winston My Dad will be forced to use opiates and other meds for the 16 months.Should he NOT JUST have been provided with Sativex or Bedocran cannabis.??
Many other people are also suffering discriminative arrests for their choice to use an effective pain-relief medicine, how can you justify this?
Help free my father and many, many other medical users from the punishment of this unjust law.
By P Matthews
Additional info from John Barnett