Canada introduces law to decriminalize marijuana

Nation would be first G7 member to legalize drug

Canada introduces law to decriminalize marijuana

World Bulletin / News Desk

 The Liberal government of Canada introduced legislation Thursday that would make it legal for adults o buy and grow marijuana for personal.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said making the drug legal in small quantities, or recreational marijuana, and selling it through provincially approved retail outlets would help keep marijuana out of the hands of minors and stop organized crime from profiting for its sale.

But the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) said organized crime, including the infamous Hell’s Angels motorcycle club have already acquired legal production licenses for medical marijuana that can then be sold illegally across the country.

It remains to be seen if criminal organizations can break into the recreational marijuana market that will be created by the new government legislation. The CBC did not name its sources for the medical marijuana story in order to protect those individuals from possible reprisal by organized crime and gangs.

Member of Parliament Bill Blair, a former head of the Toronto Police Department, said the legalization of marijuana will better protect young people and cut out organized crime.

“The current system of prohibition is failing our kids,” Blair said, as reported by CTV News. He said the legislation introduced Thursday is expected to become law by the end of June when distribution and pricing arrangements are in place.

When that takes effect, Canada would be the first G7 nation to make marijuana legal.

Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale agreed with Blair.

“Police forces spend between $2 billion and $3 billion every year trying to deal with cannabis, and yet Canadian teenagers are among the heaviest users in the western world,” Goodale said. “We simply have to do better.”

The new law actually has two components – to regulate recreational use and sales of the drug, and to beef up impaired driving laws for those driving under the influence of cannabis.

Canadians aged 18 and older would be able to possess 30 grams of the drug and grow up to four plants at home. But illegal sales or giving it to minors would carry penalties up to 14 years in jail.

Last Mod: 14 Nisan 2017, 05:34
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