Pubdate: Wed, 16 Jun 2004
Source: Sooke News Mirror (CN BC)
Copyright: 2004 Sooke News Mirror
Author: Jeff Norton


Re: "Pot bust sends society reeling," (Sooke News Mirror, June 2), I am 
writing to express my appreciation to the RCMP for conducting this raid and 
(at least temporarily) shutting down this marijuana grow-op.

While I have compassion for those that are truly suffering from medical 
disabilities and need to get the medical marijuana they require under the 
terms of the license that Health Canada has issued, I do not want to see 
the residents of the subdivision surrounding the "Vancouver Island 
Therapeutic Cannabis Research Institute" become victims of this 
facility.What the spokesman for Vancouver Island Compassion Society's 
Philippe Lucas fails to mention in your article is that the "facility" that 
was raided was a house located in a residential subdivision.

Several families with small children live near this house and the type of 
people this operation will attract, looking for an easy ripoff, could cause 
unnecessary risk to the residents.This house is also located in a rural 
"interface" area and when the forests are tinder dry during the fire 
season, this "facility" will also elevate the risk to the residents due to 
the possibility of fire that has been associated with these operations.

The subdivision in question already has registered covenants in place to 
prevent any businesses from operating out of a house, but even if Mr. Lucas 
wants to ignore these covenants and the safety of area residents, I would 
want to know if his society ever attempted to have current zoning changed 
to allow a research facility to operate in a residential area, or if they 
have bothered to obtain a business licence. Mr. Lucas is quick to point to 
his rights and the rights of the members of his society, but has no problem 
ignoring the rights of the residents of the subdivision he has set up shop 
in. If Mr. Lucas expects to have any legitimacy for his society then he 
must operate within the terms of the licence that Health Canada has issued 
and do so in an industrial area that can provide the proper security and a 
structure suitable for conducting this type of research.

Jeff Norton, East Sooke
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