OTTAWA, Ontario--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The Canadian National Medical Marijuana Association (CNMMA) is pleased to see the government continuing with consultation prior to the adoption of legislation that legalizes marijuana.
“We applaud the government for its openness in the comprehensive consultation process and for such a high level of engagement,” said Deepak Anand, Executive Director of the Canadian National Medical Marijuana Association. “We praise and support Parliamentary Secretary Bill Blair for embarking upon a cross-country tour to meet with police chiefs and putting communities first.”
Blair, formerly Toronto’s police chief, is touring Canada to speak to communities to hear concerns prior to the adoption of legislation legalizing marijuana, which the government has committed to introducing this spring.
The CNMMA remains a proud partner in the consultation process and applauds the federal government’s task force its recommendations - which include selling marijuana through the mail or in storefronts to people aged 18 and older - but urges that certain considerations be kept in mind throughout the implementation process.
Some of those considerations are as follows:
- Though CNMMA originally sought the recommended age restricts to be 21 years old, it believes the task force’s recommendation of 18 strikes a necessary balance between protecting youth and reducing the demand for black-market products. Though CNMMA still encourages provincial governments, as they develop distribution framework, to consider on a case-by-case basis whether their current minimum ages for alcohol would serve to reduce both harm to young people and the impacts of restrictions that drive willing consumers out of the regulated market and into the illicit one
- Public safety is of utmost concern when developing this legislation. The CNMMA is satisfied with the task force’s recommendations in this area, specifically those that make reference to graduated sanctions for impaired driving. CNMMA suggests that if all laws surrounding marijuana use are addressed via a dedicated legislative act including those for impaired driving, that medical users be held to the same expectation of responsible use.
- Quality of product is important to ensure in the new legislation. The federal task force report refers to a system of supply management with the intent of controlling price. The CNMMA is concerned that a licensing model based on limiting supply would reduce market diversity and draw the focus away from rewarding producers that innovate and consistently produce high-quality products.
The purpose of the Canadian National Medical Marijuana Association is to ensure all Canadian patients who benefit from medical marijuana in Canada, have access to the highest quality of product and services, to meet their specific health care needs in a safe, well-regulated environment.