Marijuana Politics

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Mon
02
Dec

'Incredibly low': Only 118 pardons granted for pot possession in first 4 months

Four months after the Liberal government passed legislation to provide free, fast pot pardons, just 118 people have had their records cleared — a figure one observer calls "incredibly low."

Statistics provided by Public Safety Canada show there have been 234 applications for record suspensions to date.

The government has estimated that about 10,000 people are eligible for the expedited pardons.

Sen. Kim Pate, a longtime advocate for prisoners and criminal justice, said the small numbers issued to date show that significant barriers persist.

"I think they're incredibly low, given what we understand is probably tens of thousands and probably many more convictions for simple possession," she said.

Mon
02
Dec

Christmas without legal edible cannabis stocking stuffers minor buzz kill: industry

Playing the role of sativa Santa this year would have been a merry prospect, said Calgary candy-maker Brad Churchill.

But federal regulator Health Canada’s meticulously measured approach in approving production of licensed cannabis snacks and other derivatives has put those edible elves on hold.

“It’s disappointing in the standpoint of not having it in the stores for the holiday season,” said Churchill, owner of Choklat.

“(Federal approvals are) taking longer than it really should but, at the end of the day, the wheels of progress are grinding.”

In one way, the gradual rollout of the next generating of legal cannabis products — which were officially legalized Oct. 17 — comes as a relief, said Churchill.

Fri
29
Nov

How will cannabis edibles change roadside testing and RIDE checks?

Officers and government officials will be on high alert when Cannabis 2.0 products roll out across most of Canada in mid-December — especially on the roads.

Conventional, smoked cannabis is easier to detect due to the smoke and smell. But edibles take longer to kick in and don’t have the odour rolled joints provide.

Fri
29
Nov

3 cannabis dispensaries close after police threaten to seize properties

The deadline for Saint John cannabis dispensaries to shut down their operations was Thursday, and most seem to have gotten the message.

Giggles Gaming Cafe on Union Street, the Green Room on Rothesay Road and King Canna on Germain Street have all stopped selling THC products. 

The businesses got letters from the Saint John Police Force saying the properties they were operating out of were "an instrument of unlawful activity," because police believe they were selling cannabis illegally.

The letters said the places had two weeks to stop selling cannabis or their properties would be seized using the Civil Forfeiture Act.

Laura Newman, an employee at King Canna, said the store has stopped selling all THC products, and customers are "not pleased."

Thu
28
Nov

Ucluelet, B.C., refuses 3 cannabis store proposals

The District of Ucluelet on the west coast of Vancouver Island denied three cannabis store applications at a council meeting last week.

Mayor Mayco Noel said even though cannabis has been legal for a year, he didn't think the stores would be a good fit for the community.

The decision has been somewhat controversial among residents — especially since neighbouring Tofino approved two stores this summer. 

Marilyn McEwen, a councillor with the district of Ucluelet, voted in favour of two of the cannabis stores. 

"I liked the locations ... and I liked both of the applicants," she said on CBC's All Points West. 

McEwen was the only councillor to vote in favour of any of the applications. 

Thu
28
Nov

Quebec will get cannabis edibles, but not in time for winter holidays

Cannabis edibles are legal in Quebec starting Dec. 5, but people won’t be able to get their hands on them until Jan 1.

The delay will come despite no penalties from the province’s pot regulator, Société québécoise du cannabis (SQDC), if anyone does sell products starting Dec. 5.

“Edibles are not a race,” SQDC spokesperson Fabrice Giguère told the Montreal Gazette.

Thu
28
Nov

Outcome of pot plebiscite lights up prospect of cannabis store in Manitoba town

A Manitoba town has voted by a narrow margin in favour of allowing a retail cannabis shop in their community.

Residents of Niverville, south of Winnipeg, cast ballots Tuesday in a plebiscite on the question of whether a pot store should be allowed to open there.

A total of 863 people opted to let Canna Cabana — a retailer selected through a provincial process — set up shop.

Another 719 voted against the move.

Town council decided to hold the plebiscite in August, when it initially denied the conditional use permits the business needed to open.

Residents on both sides of the issue put up signs around the community, with some urging people to say no to drugs.

Wed
27
Nov

5 Problems Facing The Fledgling Hemp Industry

Cannabis activist Jack Herer once opined that hemp is the only thing that could save the world. So when the new Farm Bill was written into law last year, many believed it to be the birth of an industry with world-changing potential.   

While they might yet be correct in their beliefs, the national liberalization of hemp has not been without some hurdles. Tightening regulations, lack of infrastructure, and ‘hot’ crops have all contributed to a difficult year for those who have turned their hand to hemp farming. 

Here are some of the main problems plaguing the hemp industry today:

Wed
27
Nov

Black Canadians sidelined from canabis economy

Some economic and reparative progress has been made, but cannabis justice is not possible until policing stops unfairly targeting Black Canadians.

Ten months before cannabis was legalized last October, I asked a question: Where are Black Canadians in the cannabis debate? I sought to stimulate active involvement of Canada’s Black communities in our country’s cannabis conversation while explaining the socio-systemic barriers that might account for why African Canadians were not playing a more prominent role in the public and private developments of legalization.

Tue
26
Nov

Canada's New Health Minister's Thoughts On Cannabis: What You Should Know

Read entire article here.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has unveiled the list of ministers who will make up his cabinet for his second term.

Patty Hajdu, formerly the minister of employment, will replace Ginette Petitpas Taylor as minister of health. 

Canada’s Minister of Health holds special importance to the country’s cannabis market, since the cabinet member oversees the Health Canada agency, which is responsible for regulating legal cannabis. 

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