A mother has called for the legalized prescription of cannabis to help people like her son who suffer from a rare form of epilepsy.
Karen Gray, from East Craigs in Edinburgh, wants the Home Office to allow the use of medical cannabis oil, which is currently illegal in the UK.
Her son Murray can have up to 12 seizures a day and has been in hospital for all but two weeks of this year.
She has now launched a petition calling for a change in the law.
Ms Gray told the BBC’s Good Morning Scotland radio program: “I have been speaking to parents in America where this is available and this has really, really helped their children’s seizures.
“It either reduces it or gets rid of it. It doesn’t work for all people but it does work for some people and I just think, why don’t we have it?
“We, in this country, are the biggest exporter of medical cannabis and I just don’t understand why we can’t access it.”
The Home Office has said the drug “cannot be practically prescribed, administered or supplied to the public”.
A spokesman added that it can only be used for research.
Members of the all-party parliamentary group (APPG) on drug policy reform want Home Secretary Amber Rudd to issue a license for some epilepsy sufferers to take the medication.
The move came after requests for a medical cannabis license to help a six-year-old boy from Warwickshire whose rare form of epilepsy improved after taking the drug were denied.
Group co-chair, Conservative MP Crispin Blunt said: “Parliament really must look at reforming our laws to allow access to cannabis for medical purposes, which has huge public support.”
The Home Office previously said it recognized that people with chronic pain and debilitating illnesses are “looking to alleviate their symptoms”.
A spokesman added: “However, it is important that medicines are thoroughly tested to ensure they meet rigorous standards before being placed on the market, so that doctors and patients are assured of their efficacy, quality and safety.
“Cannabis is listed as a Schedule 1 drug, as in its raw form it is not recognized in the UK as having any medicinal benefit and is therefore subject to strict control restrictions.
“This means it cannot be practically prescribed, administered, or supplied to the public in the UK, and can only be used for research under a Home Office license.
“The Home Office would not issue a license to enable the personal consumption of a Schedule 1 drug.”