The Canadian government introduced a pair of bills Thursday that will legalize and regulate recreational marijuana across the country by July 2018.
Adults 18 years and over will be allowed to possess 30 grams of dry marijuana in public and able to grow up to 4 plants at home.
Kamloops-Thompson-Cariboo MP Cathy McLeod challenged the legislation and says the proposed age of possession goes against the Canadian Medical Association evidence which shows the brain is still undergoing major development up until the mid-twenties and marijuana can interfere with this development.
Union of BC Municipalities (UBCM) President Murray Krause however, says the feds seem to be taking a sensible approach.
“I applaud the notion that the government’s focus appears to be keeping profits away from organized crime and having a way to prohibit the sale to children and youth”
UBCM is currently seeking feedback from its members on the issue until April 28 to collect input on issues including taxation, possible changes to existing bylaws and methods of distribution and law enforcement.
Anyone caught giving pot to minors could face 14 years in jail. Imports and exports of cannabis and related products will remain illegal. Provinces and territories will be able to enact their own age limits for cannabis consumption and personal production.
McLeod says that the list of unanswered questions grows as you study the legislation.
- How will it make it safe for kids? How will it make it safe for motorists? How will it make it safe for workplaces?
- What are the costs of legalization? Does the federal government have a plan to work with municipalities and provinces, or will it just download all the responsibility for implementation and enforcement to them?
- How will the issue of roadside testing be addressed and what direction is being given to police forces across the country to deal with marijuana possession and driving?
- Is legalization really going to take the criminal element out of pot sales?
“I will continue to raise serious questions as Justin Trudeau’s plan to bring pot to corner stores across Canada moves forward,” said McLeod.
(With Files from Shannon Waters with MYPRINCEGEORGENOW and MP Cathy McLeod)