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On April 13, the Liberal government unveiled a bill that would legalize recreational marijuana in Canada by July 2018. If passed, the legislation would allow people over the age of 18 to buy marijuana. What does this mean for your job (and career prospects)?
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If Trudeau says something shouldn't be criminal in a year, then people shouldn't be getting criminal records for it now - especially when most of those people are folks who don't enjoy his family's privileges of being white and wealthy. A criminal record traps people in the country and traps them in poverty. Almost every job does background checks, even volunteer organizations. It deeply impacts lives and when that record is due to nonviolent pot possession, it amounts to cruel and usual punishment.
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They tend to be more educated, too.
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Health Canada did not say how much the proposed system would cost.
There's a lot of doubt in the bill's ability to achieve the government's key goals.
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Those 18 and over will be able to buy the drug legally in 2018.
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Is Canada "about to become the stoner living in America's attic?''
The bills introduced today would make Canada the first member of the G7 to legalize marijuana for recreational use across the country.
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The prospect of plain packaging has pot producers warning the federal government that they won't be able to compete with the black market without some form of branding.
Reasonable taxation, responsible branding and in-store marketing are the most powerful tools the federal government has to eliminate the black market. Professional companies must be allowed to explain to consumers why their products are superior to those offered by their illegal competitors.
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The Liberals say the current system of prohibition does not stop young people from using marijuana.
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Shoppers Drug Mart and Loblaws recently made headlines by announcing they will cover medical cannabis for their employees. But the devil is always in the details. While these two chains should be praised for their progressive steps forward, we also need to ask who this coverage is provided for, how much is being covered, as well as how this fits with the overall long-term strategy to position pharmacies as the front-line dispensers of medical cannabis.
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If we are concerned about public safety we need to make it more attractive for people to grow, distribute and consume cannabis legally than illegally so that there is engagement with public safety mechanisms. Right now it is far more attractive for people to grow and consume illegally.
It is encouraging to see that the Liberal government has taken their time making this change and will continue to do so. There are a number of legal and social factors to consider when deciding something that has been illegal should be otherwise.
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We often create policies that are meant to protect youth, particularly around drug use. But what we actually end up doing is criminalizing and victimizing them further. With regulation we'll actually be able to start to undo some of the harms caused by prohibition - harms a lot worse than the use of cannabis itself.
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Contenders faced off in their second debate.
The way the media and government treats the idea of minors and cannabis or minors and alcohol is very different. When a dispensary is alleged to have sold some cannabis to a minor, they face a police raid and harsh commentary in the media. But the daily sales to minors from liquor outlets is not treated like a big deal at all.
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Considering this justice system crisis, cannabis should obviously be the lowest priority for police and the courts, but it's not. Not only are police launching more raids against dispensaries than ever before, but ridiculous charges for small-scale "cannabis crimes" are continuing from coast to coast.
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Legalization of all non medical use of drugs is an attainable goal. But confronting the opioid crisis is an urgent and unprecedented call to action. Public health experts and their activist allies are leading the way. Let's not get caught up in complicated and protracted arguments about legalization of all drugs.
Health Canada officially recommends against smoking marijuana.
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The PM said legalizing marijuana will take money away from gangs.
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While to some extent, I believe homeowners should have some say in what happens in their rental properties, this needs to be balanced with the rights of individuals to grow their cannabis for medical purposes and have access to affordable medicine.
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Since Justin Trudeau became Prime Minister, I estimate that there have been over 56,000 "police reported incidents" of cannabis possession in Canada. Note that these are not cases where people are being arrested for a more serious crime, and the police also find a joint in their pocket. These are "federal statute incidents reported by police, by most serious offence." So in all these "incidents," cannabis possession was the most serious "crime" being committed.
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While the main output of the ongoing battle for the Conservative Party of Canada's leadership has been a deluge of candidates, a few interesting policies have also surfaced.
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Everybody wants to know when the federal government will finally make this election promise a reality. Will it be next year? Or could it still be a couple of years away? I want to know as much as anyone else. And fortunately, I don't have to resort to asking for guesstimates from eternally-optimistic pot aficionados or tipsy businessmen in the bar. Instead, I'm fortunate enough to have access to the hotshots who run Canada's publicly-traded, industrial-scale growers.
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The "largest legal cannabis business in the world" gets an awesome stock ticker.
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A U.S. report says many uncertainties remain about the plant's health and safety risks.
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The emerging legalization of marijuana is an opportunity for continued and new business success in First Nation communities. As parts of the U.S. have started legalizing the sale of marijuana (and Canada is on its way), cannabis capitalists are flocking to invest in dispensaries and other marijuana-related projects.
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When I previously discussed why Canadians may be barred from the United States if they admit to smoking marijuana, I did not discuss what options might be available if a Canadian is actually barred by United States Customs and Border Protection ("USCBP") based on criminal grounds. I will now address this issue.
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Canada's well-financed medical marijuana LPs boast that they're pioneering the very best industry standards in the world. Now this claim to fame has been besmirched.
Since the Task Force announced their recommendations for the legalization and regulation of cannabis in Canada last week, the focus has predominantly been on age restrictions, suggested in the report at 18 years old with provincial autonomy to mirror drinking ages. While the media frames this as "Trudeau OK with Canadians as young as 18 accessing cannabis", I find myself questioning why we continue to speak about young adults who are 18 and 19 as if they are children.