Pubdate: Sun, 24 Jun 2018
Source: Victoria Times-Colonist (CN BC)
Copyright: 2018 Times Colonist


OTTAWA - Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale says the government will
look at ways to make things fair for those who have criminal records
for marijuana possession after legalization comes into force.

Goodale says the question of pardoning individuals with criminal
records for possessing marijuana is legitimate and one the government
will pursue once the law takes effect. article continues below
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"When that law changes, which will happen on the 17th of October, then
the government will turn its attention to those issues that arise once
the law has changed which is in fact making sure that it is fair both
in current terms and historic terms to everyone," Goodale said on
CTV'S "Question Period" Sunday morning.

Goodale also made the point that the existing law has not yet

Goodale's office said once Bill C-45 is enacted, the government will
examine how to make things fairer for individuals who have been
previously convicted for minor possession offences, adding that it's
committed to reforming the pardons system.

"Inaccessible pardons can be a significant barrier to good employment
as many positions require criminal record checks. We want to ensure
that the waiting period, fee and purpose of the program are fair,
proportionate and productive," said a spokesperson for Goodale.

The government's legislation to legalize and regulate marijuana passed
last week, but it won't come into effect for another three months.

In the lead up to legalizing marijuana, the NDP repeatedly called for
the decriminalization of marijuana for personal possession before it
becomes legal.

NDP justice critic Murray Rankin is expected to introduce a private
member's bill aimed at expunging criminal records of individuals with
convicted marijuana-related crimes in the fall after the legislation
comes into force.
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