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Letter to Health Canada from International Hempology Society

By Hempology | January 8, 2008

Dear Tony Clements
Minister for Health Canada
Dec 4, 2007

While we recognize that you and your staff are busy, there has been no response to our letter dated Jan 3, 2007 and we would appreciate an answer. To refresh your memory about the correspondence between us, we are sending you copies of our newsletter, Cannabis Digest, in which you will find the earlier letters and more information about the CBC of C. Please forgive us if you did not receive the last letter, but we have grown impatient waiting for a reply.

The irony of trying to convince Health Canada that it is healthier to eat cannabis or apply it on the skin, than it is to smoke the herb, strikes at the unfair and unreasonable manner in which the MMAR is being run. It is one more reason why the City of Victoria condemned the MMAR in a letter dated March 20, 2006. To our knowledge, Health Canada has not replied to the City of Victoria either, so we do not take the delay personally.

We are also still waiting to be contacted by the Office of Research and Surveillance in regards to the ongoing research project at the CBC of C comparing cannabis products to prescription drugs. In the last letter we received from Susan Russell, dated Sept 28, 2006, she said that our study was to be forwarded to that office. Given that Health Canada has stated that research is a priority for the government and that funding for any research has been cut by the federal Conservative Party, shouldn’t the Office of Research and Surveillance be interested in the research that is being done? The letters we have received from Health Canada have repeatedly stated that “there is no scientific evidence to support the efficacy and safety of dried marijuana as a medicine to the extent required for marketed drugs in Canada or anywhere else in the world,? and yet there seems to be no interest in obtaining that information from clubs such as ours who have been working in the field for over a decade.

There are now 2,200 members of the CBC of C, people with permanent, physical disabilities and diseases who depend upon us for quality medicinal products, which means we serve more patients than you help with the MMAR. It may seem easy to ignore the seven questions that we asked in the last letter and to continue to deny the CBC of C an Exemption #56 from the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act. However, if we are forced to engage in a letter writing campaign through our membership, it will not be so easy to ignore the hundreds of letters and phone calls regarding these issues that you will receive instead. Certainly we would prefer to at least receive responses to our letters, even if the answers are rarely satisfactory.

If you have any questions about the CBC of C, the research project or the proposed Exemption #56 system, please do not hesitate to call me at 250-381-4220. We look forward to your response. Thank you for your time.

Leon ‘Ted’ Smith
President, International Hempology 101 Society

For more information about these letters see Cannabis Digest #5, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, and 12. If you are interested in writing your own letter, feel free to do so. Any letters to Health Canada or the media carry much more weight if you have received a license to possess or grow. Those forms are always available at the CBC of C, and we would we happy to provide assistance to anyone involved in the struggle to provide legal access to quality cannabis products in Canada. We will give everyone an update on Health Canada’s activities in the next issue.

Topics: Articles, CD-16th, Winter 2008 | Comments Off

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