Is Weed Legal in Canada Yet?
Source: Weed News
Making weed legal in Canada is a dream of the vast majority of pot-friendly Canadians. Fortunately, we can already see it coming. The main question is: when will the legalization of cannabis in Canada take place?
This is a fairly complex matter, as the Liberals want to take all the necessary measures and ensure the safety of its people before making weed legal. That being said, before the new legislation is brought into life, the Department of Justice has decided to advise Canadian government on the best ways of planning the legalization of marijuana.
Such a report could provide us with a better sense of what the future cannabis laws will look like. For the time being, the panel remains at the stage of giving recommendations and the Liberals are still unsure of when to make marijuana legal in Canada.
The Optimistic Timeline For The New Legislation
Source: Plants not Pills
According to the Liberal government, the new laws around marijuana in Canada should be introduced on April 20. The implementation of such laws will include gathering recommendations from provincial, territorial and municipal governments, and taking into account the opinion of health experts on this matter. There will be nine-member panel chaired by Anne McLellan, a former deputy prime minister, in cooperation with Paul Martin who was in charge of administering the Ministry of Health and Justice. Because health is a priority in the case of making weed legal in Canada, there are five doctors in the team of the task force.
Will The Possession of Weed Be Decriminalized In the Meantime?
Such a scenario is highly questionable, as Michel Picard, the parliamentary secretary to the minister of public safety, said that decriminalizing marijuana is not a priority for the government. With that said, pot-friendly Canadians will be, least to say, disappointed.
Some Questions Still Remain Unanswered
There’s a myriad of hazy details about making weed legal in Canada. Some questions are still to be answered because it seems the government itself is unsure of certain aspects of legalization.
First of all, you may not be able to grow your own stash. This may sound nitpicking, because hey, if you can make your own beer and wine, why not allow people to have their own beautiful plant? Such an attitude of the government towards personal growers comes from the need to keep organized crime out of the trade. Bill Blair, the parliamentary secretary to the justice minister, said that a “regulatory framework” – in other words, “certified dispensaries” – will allow the control of production and distribution of cannabis. The main argument of the government in this particular instance states that marijuana, unlike tomatoes or other vegetables and herbs, poses significant social and health dangers.
Furthermore, there’s a question of age at which one will be able to buy marijuana. Although there are no defined frames yet, 18 looks like the fair minimum. While it would be a reasonable solution, the government thinks that risks from cannabis usage are significant until the brain is fully mature, which takes place at the age of 25. It sounds bizarre since the drinking age in Canada varies between 18 and 19, and the alcohol is far more intoxicating than weed, not to mention its potential for abuse. In a perfect world, Canada would follow the laws of Colorado and Washington, where the legal age for the possession of marijuana is 21. However, things are far from being ideal.
If you’re wondering if making weed legal in Canada will entail the general accessibility of marijuana, you’ll have to tone down your enthusiasm. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has told the public that he isn’t optimistic about seeing cannabis products available in every corner store. The government plans to maintain some sort of licensed private-sector production and distribution which will be kept in a patchwork system where distribution differs between provinces.
Another aspect to be mentioned in the discussion about the legalization of cannabis in Canada is whether the government should allow public consumption of weed. There’s a chance that the use of marijuana will be restricted to private residencies.
What About People Who Already Have a Medical Marijuana License?
The government has said that those who have a medical marijuana license will still be able to grow weed at home. However, the laws regarding the growth of cannabis by Canadians are going to be restricted when the new legislation is introduced. Provided that there is a network of licensed cannabis dispensaries, medical marijuana patients will have easier access to weed, and therefore won’t depend on their home-grown products. As for the younger audiences, some medically authorized youth will be granted access to high potency cannabis after consulting a doctor.
Will I Be Pardoned For a Former Drug-related Crime?
Unfortunately not. As an evergreen latin proverb says: “Lex retro non agit”, which basically means that there’s no chance you’ll be pardoned for previous charges regarding the possession of cannabis. Since production and possession of marijuana are not legal in Canada yet, the police will continue to enforce current regulations unless you use marijuana for medical purposes.
Justin Trudeau has said that he will not allow removing criminal records of Canadians who have been charged before the new legislation. Although the vast majority of people got busted with anything but a serious quantity of weed, some folks were handing weed out to children, which is considered a serious crime. That being said, the Prime Minister indicated that the aforementioned issue is not on the priority list of the government. Well, fair enough.
In conclusion, marijuana is not legalized in Canada yet. Moreover, making weed legal in Canada will not mean that you will be able to buy the herb in a corner shop down the street, nor will you be permitted to smoke it explicitly in public. The government of Canada remains very serious about the new cannabis legislation and they want the law to ensure safety in terms of health, especially when children are concerned.