Published: Thu, April 20, 2017
Medicine | By Megan Pierce

Canadian government unveils marijuana legalization bill

Canadian government unveils marijuana legalization bill

Recent media reports have indicated that it is the goal of the federal government to have recreational cannabis legalized by July 1, 2018.

The Cannabis Act would tighten Canada's impaired-driving laws regarding being under the influence of cannabis.

The minimum age for recreational use of marijuana has been set at 18, but provinces can decide to set a higher minimum age, as some now do in the case of alcohol.

Adults would be able to grow up to four plants per household (not per person) at a maximum height of one metre, from a legal seed or seedling, or purchase from a licensed retailer.

Many nations have either decriminalized marijuana, allowed it to be prescribed medically or effectively stopped enforcing laws against it.

Marijuana producers say the federal government's proposed legal-pot regime needs more details to clarify issues like permissible advertising and distribution. "That is on par with violent crimes, assaults, and rape, which have penalties in that range". We also represent the leading retail and banner buying groups serving independent pharmacies. A positive test could result to more testing including a blood test.

Despite having low levels of mind-altering THC, hemp has been lumped into the same category as marijuana in the United States, and is classified as a Schedule 1 drug under the Controlled Substances Act.

"There's no scientific basis for anything like that", Larsen said. Canada's 10 provinces and three territories have the authority to increase, but not decrease, the minimum age for use and impose additional requirements for personal cultivation.

The bill, inspired in part by the experiences of cannabis regimes in Colorado and Washington state, goes well beyond the USA situation, where marijuana remains prohibited at the federal level.

A frontrunner for the leadership of the Tories, Kellie Leitch, meanwhile, said she would repeal the bill and reinstate the ban, if elected. "Now we can generate tens of thousands of jobs and we can save all this money on policing". In 2015, local polling company Insights West found that 65 percent of Canadians are in favour of recreational legalization. “Criminals pocket 7 to 8 billion dollars in proceeds.”.

Larsen predicted that legalization could be damaging to B.C.'s economy if not carried out properly.

Illegal pot dispensaries have sprouted up in cities across Canada in the last few years, especially in Vancouver and Toronto. "I'm not seeing that".

"We know that criminal prohibition has failed to protect our kids and our communities", said parliamentary secretary Bill Blair.

"Ontario remains committed to developing a balanced regulatory framework that is focused on protecting our youth, maximizing public health and road safety, and reducing harm", Naqvi said.

The government also aims to establish "significant penalties" for those who engage young Canadians in "cannabis-related offences" and a "zero-tolerance approach" to drug-impaired driving, along with a "robust" public awareness campaign. "We need to make sure that it's harder for underage Canadians to access marijuana, and that will happen under a controlled and regulated regime", he said at an economic conference past year.

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