Pubdate: 10 Mar 1997
Source: Chris Clay
Author: Neev Tapiero
Note: MAP is archiving each of the affidavits filed in the Chris Clay 
Constitutional Challenge to preserve these important documents.
Bookmark: (Clay, Chris)







I, NEEV TAPIERO, of the City of Toronto in the Prnvinee of Ontario, MAKE 

1. I am a 25 year old student at Ryerson Polytechnical University in 
Toronto, Ontario. I became interested in the medical use of cannabis sativa 
and have been studying the application of marijuana for medicijnl purposes 
for the past two years.

2. As a result of my studies, I have been interested in the formation of a 
local Buyer's Club in Toronto. A Buyers' Club is a public organization that 
supplies people wuth cannabis sativa for diagnosed medical needs. Such a 
club has been operating successlully for a number of years in San 
Francisco. A buyer's club provides marihuana that is affordable and of a 
quality that is both safe and effective for the club's members. in order to 
become a member, a letter of diagnosis from a medical doctor and a release 
of confidential medical information to confirm the diagnosis is required. 
People with recognized ailments such as cancer, multiple sclerosis, spinal 
paralysis, glaucoma, arthritis, migraines, and AIDS often qualify for 
membership. In order to become a member there are certain rules that must 
be followed. Members will often have the amount of cannabis they receive 
limited to a daily dosage and are strictly prohibited from trafficking or 
sharing their medical cannabis with non-members. Other rules include no 
driving after ingestion of the cammbis. The staff is trained to deal with 
each patient in a compassionate manner in order to create an atmosphere of 

3. Over the past 9 months I have been meeting with The Drug Treatment 
Coordinator at the People With AIDS Foundation in Toronto. We have 
discussed the viability of a buyer's club in Toronto and the potential 
benefit this organization would have for AIDS patients in the Toronto area.

4. Most recently I have endeavoured to discover the Canadian federal 
government's a-. position on the medical use of cannabis sativa in order to 
determine whether or not a buyer's club could be established in Toronto. 
 From conversations I have had with several AIDS patients, I learnt that 
some AIDS patients have been receiving prescriptions from their physicians 
for synthetic THC (the active ingredient in cannabis sativa) which is known 
by the trade name, "Marinol". I have been informed and do verily believe 
that these patients are dissatisfied with the therapeutic effects of the 
synthetic marijuana and, as a result, I initiated correspondence with the 
Bureau of Dangerous Drug Surveillance in order to determine if and how, 
medical marijuana in a plant form could be legally distributed. On November 
18, 1996 I wrote my first letter to Bruce Rowsell, the Director of the 
Bureau of Dangerous Drug Surveillance, discussing the medical uses of 
cannabis sativa. I inquired into the Ministry of Health's position on the 
medical use of cannabis sativa and the process involved in obtaining a 
permit to possess and distribute cannabis sativa to people with medical 
needs. Attached hereto to this my affidavit as Exhibit "A" is a copy of my 
letter of November 18, 1997.

5. Mr. Rowsell responded with a letter dated November 29, 1996. Mr. Rowsell 
stated that the distribution of a drug listed in the Narcotics Control Act 
is only permitted for a licensed institution to distribute to another 
licensed institution such as a hospital. He also stated that no scientific 
research had been provided to the Bureau of Dangerous Drugs to indicate 
that marihuana effectively treats a medical condition. Hereto to this my 
affidavit as Exhibit "B" is a copy of Mr. Rowsell's leiter ofNovember 29, 
1996. As a result, I sent a further letter, dated January 20,1997 to Mr. 
Rowsell indicating my disagreement with the government's assessment of the 
medical value of cannabis sativa. Attached hereto to this my affidavit as 
Exhibit "C" is a copy of my letter dated January 20, 1997.

6. In a subsequent letter dated February 4th, 1997, Mr. Rowsell indicated 
that Health Canada has not undertaken any scientific studies to determine 
the value of cannabis sativa in treating a medical condition. He stated 
that such research is conducted by pharmaceutical companies or research 
institutions according to acceptable scientific protocol. This protocol was 
not defined by Mr. Rowsell. Attached hereto to this my affidavit as Exhibit 
"D" is a copy of Mr. Rowsell's letter of February 4, 1997.

7. In a letter dated February 6th, I sent a copy of an article by Dr. 
Jerome Kassirer, M.D., in the January 30th, 1997 edition of the New England 
Journal of Medicine. This article endorses the medical applications of 
cannabis sativa, and as a result of the publication of this article, I 
questioned whether the government could maintain its position on the 
medicinal use of marihuana. Attached hereto to this my affidavit is a copy 
of my letter dated February 6, 1997 with the attached article from the New 
England Journal of Medicine.

Sworn before me at the
City of Toronto in the
province of Ontario, this
10th day of March, 1997

Neev Tapiero