The Liberal government recently surprised with their public announcement that would mark a milestone in the history of our country.
While our Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced within his electoral campaign promises, the clear goal of decriminalizing marijuana use, only a few days ago, the proposal ended up materializing.
In that official communiqué, it was indicated that the chosen date is: "Canada Day", of the following year 2018.
Although the advertisement has brought with it a series of controversies, I invite you to review the most relevant information mentioned up to now.
Why the Government of Canada decriminalizes cannabis?
The goal of the Government of Canada to legalize, regulate and restrict access to cannabis illegally in order to keep cannabis out of the hands of Canadian youth and prevent organized crime from continuing to benefit from the illegal cannabis market.
It should be noted that studies show that Canadians continue to use cannabis at some of the highest rates in the world.
In 2015, 21% of young people and 30% of young adults reported using cannabis in the past year.
It is worth mentioning that from now until the day of legalization, cannabis remains illegal unless expressly authorized.
When can Canadians buy and use cannabis legally?
The Government of Canada intends to bring the proposed Cannabis Bill into effect by July 2018. At that time, adults could own, grow and buy limited quantities of cannabis.
This would mean that possession of small amounts of cannabis would no longer be a criminal offence and would prevent profits from entering the pockets of criminal organizations and street gangs.
To discourage criminal activity, the Government of Canada is committed to ensuring that there is a legal offer of controlled quality cannabis available for sale when the Act comes into force.
Upon entry into force, adult Canadians could buy cannabis from a retailer that has been authorized by the province or territory to sell and distribute cannabis.
In provinces or territories that have not yet authorized retailers, adults could buy cannabis directly from a federally licensed producer, ordering online with secure home delivery by mail.
Why does the proposed legislation allow for the personal production of cannabis?
Is the Government not concerned that cannabis produced in the country is more easily obtained by Canadian youth?
Or that personal producers could expand the illegal market?
As the Task Force recognizes in its report, small amounts of cannabis for personal use can be grown safely and responsibly by adults.
Adults will want to take appropriate precautions to protect children and young people living in their home as they do now in storing prescription drugs, alcohol or other potentially harmful substances.
The option of growing up to 4 legal cannabis plants per residence, regardless of the number of people living there, not to exceed 1 meter in height has been included under the proposed law after careful consideration.
As in Colorado and the State of Washington. Adults could not transfer or increase this limit of 4 plants.
Provisions for personal cultivation under the proposed law do not preclude the ability of law enforcement to take action against illegal producers.
Will advertising be allowed?
The proposed promotion restrictions are intended to protect young people from being persuaded by marketing or advertising to consume cannabis.
At the same time, consumers need access to clear and objective information on which they can make informed consumption decisions.
Therefore, the legislation would allow the promotion of the type of information. In other words, precise and accurate information on cannabis products (ingredients, THC and CBD levels, etc.).
Information will also be allowed to allow consumers to distinguish the difference between brands. In all cases, this type of promotion would only be allowed when they can not be seen by young people.
What will an adult in Canada be allowed to enter into force of the Cannabis Law?
Upon entry into force of the Cannabis Act, adults in Canada may legally participate in the following activities:
-Buy fresh or dried cannabis, cannabis oil, plants and seeds to grow from a provincial or territoriality regulated retailer, or where this option is not available, directly from a federally licensed grower.
- Have up to 30 grams of dry legal cannabis or equivalent in public.
-Buy up to 30 grams or equivalent of legal cannabis and legal cannabis products.
-Cultivate up to 4 plants that do not exceed a height of 1 meter in their own residence (4 floors per household).
-To prepare various types of cannabis products (eg foodstuffs) for personal use as long as hazardous organic solvents are not used in the process.
Regarding the limitations, the parliament is still deliberating on the penalties to those who violate the new law, as well as the convictions of those who commit crimes under the influence of that substance.
Although the recent announcement fulfills the promise of legalization of liberals cannabis, there are still many pending issues, which will be informed gradually, until the day of implementation of the new law.