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Will Canada’s New Weed Regime be a Total Mess?

By admin | December 14, 2015

by NEWS 1130 Staff

Posted Dec 14, 2015 8:15 am PST

Dispute about right to grow individually and wrangling between government bodies could be among issues

Many groups don’t see full recreational marijuana program in the next 12 months


VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – From celebrations to threats of protests against Prime Minister Trudeau in a little over a month, many pot advocates are worried the push to legalize marijuana in Canada will be a total mess.

“There are going to be a lot of things for the Trudeau government to reckon with. A lot of people are hoping this is going to be an easy process but so far, we haven’t received many details about how he’s going to make this happen,” says Rachel Browne, a reporter for VICE News, which has put out a piece extrapolating on the difficulties around repeated promises to “legalize, regulate, and restrict” access to marijuana for recreational use in Canada.

“There’s an ongoing dispute about the right to grow individually. The big companies in charge of creating and distributing medical marijuana right now do not think people should have the right to grow their own plants,” Browne tells NEWS 1130.

“There are also concerns about medical marijuana and the rights that patients have. If they have to go to the recreational markets, there are questions about how that will override their medical needs.”

She also points out there will be a lot of wrangling between Health Canada, Public Safety, and the Department of Justice.

“There’s also a concern that there will possibly be a monopoly in the cultivation and supply of marijuana. But I have heard that the group representing many dispensaries is now starting to communicate with Health Canada, which they weren’t able to do under the Conservative government. There are new voices the government will now have to reckon with.”

The prime minister has said it could take years to get through the legalization process and many of the groups Browne spoke with don’t see a full recreational marijuana program within the next 12 months.

“But a lot of advocates I’ve talked to think Trudeau could immediately strike cannabis from the Controlled Substances Act and there could be bigger discussions when it comes to the ongoing raids on dispensaries and the criminal charges that continue to be laid for marijuana-related offences,” she says.

“Some of the people I spoke with said they rallied together to help Trudeau get into office, hoping this would get done quickly. I’ve heard the term ‘revolt’ used. Some advocates say that if Trudeau comes to Vancouver anytime soon, they will hold protests.”

The head of Sensible BC is among those demanding the Liberal government immediately stop arrests for cannabis possession and personal cultivation.

“We are seeing arrests and raids with police waging a pointless battle against medical marijuana access. It’s pretty shocking that we are seeing this accelerating under Trudeau, which is something we didn’t expect,” says Dana Larsen, who says pot users will legitimize weed their own way.

“I am encouraging people to start growing cannabis in their outdoor gardens this spring. Everybody should be growing a half dozen plants whether or not it’s legal. This campaign isn’t about waiting for politicians to do the right thing, it’s always been about us moving forward and ‘overgrowing’ the government, civilly disobeying these laws,” says Larsen.

“This campaign is going to continue.”

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