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Amsterdam locals react as cannabis is set to be banned in Red Light district

Amsterdam locals react as cannabis is set to be banned in Red Light district

Plans to ban smoking cannabis in Amsterdam's Red Light district have come with mixed reviews from locals.

Plans have been announced to ban the smoking of cannabis outside in the red light district area of Amsterdam. There's also been talks of placing a limit on the operational hours of the city's sex shows and brothels.

The new law set to be passed means smoking weed in public will no longer be allowed during certain times.

These new regulations are due to come into force in May 2023 and will aim to tackle the somewhat crude tourist activities that go on there, giving residents the chance to enjoy their city without the constant ‘glassy-eyed tourist zombies’ ruining the landscape.

Amsterdam is typically associated with its cannabis and sex workers, rather than its beautiful landscapes.
Chris Harris / Alamy Stock Photo

Many don't realise that it's actually a crime to possess, deal, or make drugs in the Netherlands, but the Dutch government does allow the typical tourist 'coffee shops' to sell cannabis as long as it's not causing a public nuisance.

Amsterdam is renowned for being the city for tourists to smoke cannabis in and meet sex workers who offer their services from windows of the red light district, but this could be set to change.

Residents of Amsterdam have spoken to MailOnline and told them that the 'sickly cannabis smoke' can be overpowering on streets, while high travellers are more likely to cause accidents.

Locals have reacted to the new legislations.
devi / Alamy Stock Photo

Some residents, like Sisters Sam, Marie and Ijk Van Hattum, were in favour of the liberated activities that Amsterdam has to offer, but do think the cannabis and sex trades have gone too far.

Marie said: "Amsterdam is renowned around the world for weed and prostitutes. But this is not what our city is all about.

"In the summer the whole of the city centre stinks of weed.

"I think it is now necessary to limit the use because the freedoms that allow people to smoke weed are being abused.

"We have a friend who suffered a broken leg after one of these stoned zombies walked out in front of her when she was cycling and caused a crash."

Ijk agreed, saying: "There’s a difference between the perception of Amsterdam and the reality of daily life.

"We need to limit its use as a means of precaution. It will make our city safer."

While Sam added: "I think these new rules are a good idea. We don’t smoke cannabis and never have."

Even some of those who work in cannabis shops are siding with the new regulations.
JOHN KELLERMAN / Alamy Stock Photo

Shops in Amsterdam's red light district are currently banned from selling alcohol between Thursday and Sunday after 4pm, but with the new legislation shop owners will be asked to remove all alcohol from shelves between this period of the week.

Under this law, people will also be banned from smoking cannabis in public from 4pm and 1am, Thursday to Sunday. Restaurants and bars will also be affected, and will have to close no later than 2am on Fridays and Saturdays.

Brothels, which currently operate until 6am will now have to shut at 3am at the latest.

From 1am onwards, no one will be allowed to enter a premises that sells alcohol in the red light district. These changes are hoping to give locals a bit of peace during the early hours on weekends.

Surprisingly, even those who work in the cannabis shops and cafes are in agreement with the new rules.

Zohaib Khan, who works at the Cannabis Seed Bank, told MailOnline: "I don’t think people should be able to blow smoke into other people’s faces.

"Sometimes I’m walking down the street and I cannot help but inhale their smoke. I don’t like it.

"If they want to smoke they should smoke somewhere that does not disturb others."

Featured Image Credit: Erik Lattwein / Felipe Rodriguez / Alamy Stock Photo

Topics: Drugs, Sex and Relationships