Pubdate: Wed, 16 Oct 2013
Source: Sooke News Mirror (CN BC)
Copyright: 2013 Sooke News Mirror
Author: Dana Larsen


In response to Tom Fletcher's editorial in your most recent edition. 
"B.C. marijuana referendum misguided" Sooke News Mirror, Oct. 9, 2013, page 6.

Mr. Fletcher's recent editorial misrepresented the Sensible BC 
campaign, and could lead to confusion about our efforts for a 
marijuana referendum.

The ultimate aim of Sensible BC is to have B.C.'s marijuana industry 
regulated in a similar manner to wine. Our proposed legislation, the 
Sensible Policing Act, is designed to bring us closer to that goal.

The Sensible Policing Act has four components, all carefully designed 
to be within provincial jurisdiction.

The first aspect is to redirect police resources away from being 
wasted on simple possession of marijuana. Last year, BC police made 
over 16,500 arrests for marijuana possession, draining $10.5 million 
in police and court time away from investigation of more serious 
criminal offences.

If Sensible BC is successful, then tens of thousands of hours of 
police and court time would immediately be freed up to pursue real 
criminals. This means safer communities for everyone, and less 
backlog in our courts.

Second, our legislation treats a minor in possession of marijuana 
exactly the same as if it were alcohol. It allows police to deal with 
a teenager smoking pot, but without the lifetime criminal record that 
can restrict travel and employment.

Third, the Sensible Policing Act calls upon the federal government to 
repeal marijuana prohibition, so that BC can regulate and tax it in a 
manner similar to wine and beer. This would send a powerful message 
of change to Ottawa, and give our Prime Minister the mandate to legalize.

Finally, our legislation creates a B.C. commission to figure out the 
rules needed to implement legalization. Like alcohol and tobacco, 
most of the regulation for legal marijuana would be determined at the 
provincial level.

British Columbia cannot fully legalize marijuana without a change to 
federal law, but we can take some sensible steps in the right 
direction. That is what Sensible BC is all about.

We're now about one month into our three month time-limit for 
gathering signatures. This is the largest and most organized 
marijuana reform effort in Canadian history. If you support sensible 
marijuana laws, then join our growing team of over 3000 canvassers, 
and help collect signatures in your community.

Find out more at

Dana Larsen

Sensible BC
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MAP posted-by: Jay Bergstrom