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Canadian Marijuana Legalization Soon To Be Announced

During the week of April 10th, the Canadian Liberal government is going to announce legislation that will make marijuana legal in Canada starting July 1, 2018. The legislation follows a recommendation made by the federally appointed task force led by Justice Minister Anne McLellan.

A senior government official who spoke under anonymity confirmed that Bill Blair briefed the Liberal caucus on the legislation and the plan to implement it during recent meetings. Blair is the former police chief from Toronto who has been handling all cannabis related issues for the Liberals.

Blair is now the parliamentary secretary to the minister of justice, and he relayed that the individual provinces will be able to decide how cannabis is grown, sold, and distributed within their territory. The federal government’s role will be to ensure the safety and security of the country’s cannabis supply, and licenses for producers will come from Ottawa. Prices will also be set by members of the individual provinces. The federal government chose 18 as the minimum age for purchasing cannabis, but provinces may set a higher minimum age if they decide to do so.

Canadians who would prefer to grow cannabis themselves will have that option, but they will only be able to legally have four plants in each household. While the decision to legalize cannabis was a polarizing issue for many Canadians, it was a promise made by the Liberals through Justin Trudeau shortly before he became prime minister.

The legislation aims to mimic other systems where marijuana is starting to become legal, like certain portions of the United States, at least on a state level, and Uruguay. The idea is to treat cannabis like most governments treat tobacco and alcohol. It should be regulated and legalized, and access should be restricted to those of a certain age. This prevents illegal black markets, and it keeps the profits in the hands of honest workers.

It should be noted that this legislation will not be active until next summer, so the current laws still apply. Consumers and businesses shouldn’t jump the gun in excitement, or they could be subject to police raids and prosecution. Without the necessary legal framework to make the market controllable, cannabis must continue to remain an illegal substance until the laws actually change.

If you or anyone you know has an issue with drug charges before these laws change, contact the law office of Julian Van Der Walle, Criminal Defense Lawyer. He specializes in several criminal areas including drug charges, and he has the experience and knowledge to make the difference between freedom and jail.

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