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Letter from Hempology to Health Canada

By Ted | January 22, 2003

Fri, Jan 17, 2003

Attention: Cindy Cripps-Prawak

Recent court decisions appear to pressure Health Canada to legally license organizations providing cannabis to ill citizens. Having started the first medical cannabis organization in the country in January of 1996, the Cannabis Buyers Clubs of Canada, we believe that our umbrella non-profit organization, the International Hempology 101 Society, should be formally granted a legal permit to perform this function.

During the past 7 years we have helped form and nurture a coalition of individuals who assist people with incurable, physical medical problems, calling themselves the Cannabis Buyers Clubs of Canada. For the first 5 years the club quietly operated in a residential setting. An unrelated incident in March, 2001, brought police to the apartment doors, where founder Leon Ted Smith was then urged to get a commercial space for the group. Since April 1, 2001, the club has worked out of a storefront location in downtown Victoria, providing assistance to over 1,200 people with incurable medical problems. That number includes a few dozen that work through new clubs in Parksville, BC, and Halifax NS, which we helped to create in the past few years. Through our activities we have learned about the wide variety of potential medical benefits that people with incurable medical problems can receive from eating and smoking quality cannabis products. We look forward to continuing to expand upon our knowledge and expertise as the cannabis laws are struck down in court.

We are currently creating an operations manual for the CBC of C which will help stabilize the work of the 3 existing networks. This procedural guide will also provide new clubs with a working document to help establish and maintain medical cannabis distributors and cultivators given the changing legal status of cannabis.

Considering the situation that we all face, we believe it would be prudent that our organization be granted a permit to operate. It would also be appropriate to issue special permits to grow cannabis for the club. The City Council of Victoria has expressed interest in working with Health Canada to develop a licensing process for groups such as ours. Victoria Mayor, Alan Lowe, invited the Office of Canadian Medical Access to Victoria to explain the current legal status of cannabis. We also anticipate the creation of a Canadian Cannabis Control Board, as recommended by the Federal Senate. and await the opportunity to engage formally with the government at all levels as cannabis becomes legal.

We look forward to your response to our request for a special permit to distribute cannabis to people with incurable medical problems.


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