Pubdate: Tue, 13 Jun 2017
Source: Comox Valley Record (CN BC)
Copyright: 2017 Comox Valley Record
Author: Erin Haluschak


A marijuana dispensary located on the K'omoks First Nation was shut
down by police Thursday, resulting in two arrests and seizure of drugs
and cash.

Cpl. Tammy Douglas of the RCMP Island District said in an email
officers from the Comox Valley RCMP Drug Section confirmed the
presence of marijuana and several derivatives in the storefront at the
Athadawoosh Dispensary located on Comox Road after receiving
information that drugs were being illegally trafficked out of that

Two individuals were arrested at the scene and later released, she

"There is no legal mechanism in Canada which allows for medical
marijuana dispensaries or compassion clubs to sell or provide
marijuana to the public. Storefronts and/or individuals operating in
contravention of the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act and Health
Canada regulations are subject to investigation and criminal charges
in accordance with Canadian laws.

"The Comox Valley RCMP are committed to working with our communities,
partners and stakeholders to ensure the safety of the general public
and compliance with the laws of Canada."

She explained the RCMP is guided by the existing laws and legislation,
and while police recognize the current complexities surrounding the
potential for future legislative changes, the RCMP is mandated with
enforcing the laws of Canada as they exist today.

"The dispensary next door is an illegal land use and we do not support
it. We are not above the federal law," explained Tina McLean, acting
band administrator for the K'omoks First Nation.

When asked by The Record if the lease was approved by the K'omoks
First Nation, McLean said that was all she was advised to say.

Client Karen Day said while she has a government grow licence, others
are not so fortunate and depend on dispensaries to supply them for
medicinal needs.

"I feel bad for the women over 50 who are forced to buy on the street
… there is no fair and easy access for others in our town."

Day sat on the board of directors for the North Island Compassion Club
when it was raided and shut down.

"People suffered and had to go underground. I was so happy to tell so
many people about the dispensary as I work in care and know many
people who benefit. As for myself and other ladies, this makes us feel
like criminals. I feel like we have no rights and they just want us to
go away and live in pain."
- ---
MAP posted-by: Matt