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1 CN ON: PUB LTE: Pot PerspectivesSat, 27 May 2017
Source:Record, The (Kitchener, CN ON) Author:Boucher, Dan Area:Ontario Lines:27 Added:05/28/2017

Re: Future damages - May 25

I don't smoke marijuana. That's right; I don't and I don't plan on starting. Yet letter writer after letter writer feels that once marijuana becomes legal, anyone and everyone is going to light up. Let me ask those writers, do you plan on taking up weed? Do you think it being illegal stops youth from smoking it now? Maybe it's a tax grab, but so what, we already pay sin taxes on alcohol and cigarettes. People need to get a grip.

Dan Boucher

Waterloo

[end]

2 CN BC: PUB LTE: Booze Far Worse Than MarijuanaTue, 23 May 2017
Source:Penticton Herald (CN BC) Author:Billesberger, Mark Area:British Columbia Lines:69 Added:05/28/2017

Dear Editor: This letter is in response to two recent letters to the editor with regards to the subject of marijuana and whether or not it should be legal.

The first letter from D. Simpson of Kelowna ("Marijuana not part of God's law, Herald, May 17), I am a little confused. If pot was not part of God's law, then why did He put it on earth to begin with? Marijuana has been around for tens of thousands of years (probably much longer.) Tell me, was alcohol part of God's plan? Did He plan to ruin families, finances, and lives? I thought He was a loving God. I will cite the quote used in the letter. In 2 Peter 1:3, "that we have been given all things that pertain to life and Godliness." This includes marijuana.

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3 CN BC: LTE: Driver Was High On MarijuanaTue, 23 May 2017
Source:Penticton Herald (CN BC) Author:Crossley, Paul Area:British Columbia Lines:21 Added:05/28/2017

Dear Editor: Times Square driver was high on marijuana and we here in Canada have a government barreling ahead with plans to legalize the wretched stuff. Makes all kind of sense to me. Does it to you?

Paul Crossley

Penticton

[end]

4 CN ON: LTE: Pot Law Changes Will Hurt CanadaTue, 23 May 2017
Source:Intelligencer, The (CN ON) Author:Comeau, Larry Area:Ontario Lines:60 Added:05/28/2017

(Re: Pot laws creating concerns, April 19 edition)

This excellent report by Jason Miller points out the growing concerns from municipal administrators as they try to come to grips with marijuana legalization on July 1, 2018. Councillor Mike Graham is correct that this is purely a political move by the Trudeau Liberals to fulfil an election promise and to rake in the billions expected from sales.

Parents should also be concerned with studies from the U.K., USA and our own Canadian Medical Association all showing young people using this drug run greatly enhanced risk of suffering psychosis and other mental issues later in life. Yet, in his infinite wisdom, Trudeau is ignoring the CMA's recommendation that nobody under 21 be allowed to make a purchase setting the age at 18. There are more than 85 cannabinoids contained in marijuana with very little known about their long-term effects on the human body.

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5 CN ON: Hempfest Burns OutTue, 23 May 2017
Source:Daily Press, The (CN ON) Author:Grech, Ron Area:Ontario Lines:77 Added:05/28/2017

Organizer cancelling event due to lack of sponsorship and declining health

The organizer behind Northern Ontario's longest running hemp festival is pulling the plug.

Robert Neron, a Moonbeam resident and long-time activist in support of freer access to medical marijuana, made the announcement through a posting on social media on Sunday.

He said unless someone else comes forward to take over managing the event, the cancellation of Hempfest is likely permanent.

In his announcement, Neron also revealed his intention to "retire completely from any activism" in the future.

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6 CN ON: 'Parents Would Be Shocked'Tue, 23 May 2017
Source:North Bay Nugget (CN ON) Author:Hamilton-McCharles, Jennifer Area:Ontario Lines:83 Added:05/28/2017

Students vaping marijuana juice, crushed Oxycontin, says principal

High school students are vaping marijuana juice and crushed Oxycontin before and during school.

The startling news came in March when Almaguin Highlands Secondary School principal Donna Breault made a presentation to the Near North District School Board about vaping and its dangers.

Board chairman David Thompson says parents need to be aware of what their kids are doing.

"I think parents would be shocked," Thompson says. "Students are vaping marijuana juice, crushed Oxycontin and sharing filters, which is putting them at risk of some serious health concerns like hepatitis."

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7 CN BC: City Calls For More Fentanyl Test StripsFri, 19 May 2017
Source:Metro (Vancouver, CN BC) Author:Li, Wanyee Area:British Columbia Lines:46 Added:05/24/2017

Six people died from overdoses last week in Vancouver

As the number of overdose deaths continues to rise in Vancouver, the city announced it wants to see more fentanyl test strips made available to drug users.

The strips test for the presence of fentanyl and a nine-month pilot project at Insite found users who knew their drugs contained fentanyl were more likely to decrease their dose and therefore less likely to overdose.

It's an approach that could save more lives, said Mayor Gregor Robertson. "Our residents are literally dying waiting for both treatment options that will get them off dangerous street drugs and save their lives, and immediate interventions like expanded drug testing that reduce overdoses," he said in a press release.

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8CN AB: Fentanyl Deaths Leap 61 Per CentSat, 20 May 2017
Source:Edmonton Journal (CN AB) Author:Griwkowsky, Catherine Area:Alberta Lines:Excerpt Added:05/24/2017

Provinces chief medical officer calls for heightened efforts amid deepening crisis

Alberta's top doctor is calling for expanded efforts to combat a high number of opioid deaths as health officials released a new report on fentanyl overdoses Friday.

"We need to continue our efforts to decrease the number of overdoses that we're seeing due to fentanyl and other opioids," said Dr. Karen Grimsrud, the province's chief medical officer of health, following the release of Alberta Health's Opioids and Substances of Misuse report on Friday.

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9 CN MB: Judge Slams Law, Delays SentencingSat, 20 May 2017
Source:Winnipeg Free Press (CN MB) Author:May, Katie Area:Manitoba Lines:107 Added:05/24/2017

Gives mom convicted of drug smuggling time to arrange child care ahead of mandatory prison term

In a case that has raised questions about the effect of mandatory minimum sentences, a Manitoba judge has taken pity on a woman he convicted by agreeing to give her more freedom before he sends her to prison.

In a likely unprecedented move, Justice Sheldon Lanchbery reserved his decision and delayed the sentencing of 37-year-old Sandra Dignard by about two months. That will allow the mother of four time to make child-care arrangements before she is placed in custody. The judge said he has no choice but to sentence Dignard to two years in prison for drug trafficking, despite his belief she should not be locked up.

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10 CN AB: Oped: Alberta Not Getting The Full Picture On OpioidsSat, 20 May 2017
Source:Edmonton Sun (CN AB) Author:Swann, David Area:Alberta Lines:91 Added:05/24/2017

By any objective measure, the opiate crisis has affected British Columbia far more severely than Alberta.

Both legal and illegal opiate use is more prevalent, and it was the first province to see this unprecedented number of deaths due to overdoses of fentanyl and other opiates.

B.C.'s response has been robust.

The declaration of a public health state of emergency led to resources being mobilized across government departments and between all stakeholders in a co-ordinated plan.

Their Provincial Health Officer reports monthly on the efforts to combat the crisis, and the province has embraced early harm reduction measures such as naloxone kits and supervised injection sites.

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11 CN PI: OPED: Time To Focus On PreventablesSat, 20 May 2017
Source:Journal-Pioneer, The (CN PI) Author:Colohan, Desmond Area:Prince Edward Island Lines:92 Added:05/24/2017

In a recent Canadian Public Health Association discussion paper, "A New Approach to Managing Illegal Psychoactive Substances in Canada," the point was made emphatically that our current approach to managing risk is not working.

Here are some of its highlights:

- - A psychoactive substance is a chemical that changes brain function and results in alterations in perception, mood, consciousness or behaviour. Societies mitigate the health, social, and economic consequences of the use and misuse of psychoactive substances such as alcohol, tobacco, cannabis, opioids, amphetamines, cocaine, tranquillizers and sleeping pills in a variety of ways with varying degrees of success. Their effects on population health, however, are often overshadowed by our fascination with the direct effects of substance misuse on individuals [e.g. recent rise in the opioid death rate due to adulteration of the drug supply with fentanyl and its analogues]. Currently, western societies manage illegal psychoactive substances largely through prohibition and criminalization and legal drugs, like tobacco and alcohol, through regulation, restricted availability and price control. The laws and systems initially introduced to control these substances reflected the times ! and prevalent issues of the day, but no longer reflect current scientific knowledge concerning substance-related harms to individuals, families, or communities.

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12 Canada: Pot Plans Respect International TreatiesSat, 20 May 2017
Source:Lethbridge Herald (CN AB) Author:Kirkup, Kristy Area:Canada Lines:92 Added:05/24/2017

Task force leader says Canada can be an example

A former Liberal cabinet minister who led a federally appointed task force on legalizing cannabis says Canada's plan to green light the drug for recreational use is in keeping with the spirit of international treaties - all of which criminalize the possession and production of marijuana.

It will be up to the government to make the case in relation to the treaties, Anne McLellan said Friday in an interview with The Canadian Press.

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13Canada: Unifor Cites Canna Clinic Staff's Right To UnionizeSat, 20 May 2017
Source:National Post (Canada) Author:Freeman, Sunny Area:Canada Lines:Excerpt Added:05/24/2017

TORONTO - Canada's largest private-sector union says it isn't bothered that its first-ever group of medical marijuana members works at an illegal pot dispensary.

Unifor spokeswoman Katha Fortier said it is in the process of negotiating a contract for all 40 employees at one of Toronto's Canna Clinic marijuana dispensaries, which sells dried cannabis as well as oils and edibles, but does not have a Health Canada licence to do so.

Licensed producers are currently the only legal sellers of marijuana in Canada and their operations are strictly regulated. They can sign up patients only with a medical authorization from a doctor and can deliver product only through a mail order system.

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14 Canada: Streamlined Injection-Site Conditions Become LawFri, 19 May 2017
Source:Globe and Mail (Canada) Author:Woo, Andrea Area:Canada Lines:94 Added:05/24/2017

A piece of legislation that makes it easier to open supervised injection sites has become law, replacing Harper-era regulations that effectively stalled the harm reduction service as overdose deaths climbed.

Under Bill C-37, which received royal assent on Thursday, agencies wanting to open a supervised-injection site must meet five streamlined conditions, down from 26 under the previous Respect for Communities Act.

The Liberal government tabled the bill in December. It received final approval on Wednesday, with minor amendments.

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15 CN AB: Column: Tackling The Problem Of OpioidsFri, 19 May 2017
Source:Lethbridge Herald (CN AB) Author:Spearman, Chris Area:Alberta Lines:127 Added:05/24/2017

We've all heard the very troubling news reports in Alberta and across Canada about the growing problem of addiction to opioids, especially fentanyl.

Opioid addition is devastating families and causing an alarming number of deaths among those who - knowingly or unknowingly - make the mistake of using it. The issues associated with opioid addiction touch many different agencies, institutions, public and social service organizations. It touches families, and it touches individuals.

Lethbridge is not immune. Last fall, after hearing about what was happening in our city, I asked a broad range of leaders and organizations in our community to come together to collaborate on how we can respond in the best way possible.

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16 CN ON: Legal Pot Poses Problems For MunicipalitiesSat, 20 May 2017
Source:London Free Press (CN ON) Author:Simpson, Barbara Area:Ontario Lines:74 Added:05/24/2017

Lambton County trains managers as local governments brace for expected challenges

SARNIA - With Canada ready to legalize marijuana by next July, Ontario municipalities are ablaze with activity prepping for the impacts of that move - including in the workplace.

Lambton County recently held a training session for its 75 managers about marijuana and workplace safety. Among the chief municipal concerns are the potential for workers to believe it's legal for them to smoke marijuana on municipal property, as well as the potential for impaired driving if a high worker operates a municipal vehicle.

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17 CN ON: Municipalities Eye Workplace Pot PoliciesSat, 20 May 2017
Source:Observer, The (CN ON) Author:Simpson, Barbara Area:Ontario Lines:97 Added:05/24/2017

With Canada ready to legalize marijuana by next July, Ontario municipalities are ablaze with activity prepping for the impacts of that move - including in the workplace.

The County of Lambton recently held a training session for its 75 managers about marijuana and workplace safety. Among the chief municipal concerns around legalization include the potential for workers to believe it's legal for them to smoke marijuana on municipal property, as well as the potential for impaired driving if a high worker operates a municipal vehicle.

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18Canada: Legalized Pot 'In The Spirit' Of Treaties Targeting MarijuanaSat, 20 May 2017
Source:National Post (Canada) Author:Kirkup, Kristy Area:Canada Lines:Excerpt Added:05/24/2017

OTTAWA - A former Liberal cabinet minister who led a federally appointed task force on legalizing cannabis says Canada's plan to green light the drug for recreational use is in keeping with the spirit of international treaties - all of which criminalize the possession and production of marijuana.

It will be up to the government to make the case in relation to the treaties, Anne McLellan said Friday.

"We believe, as a task force, that we are, at least, in the spirit of those treaties," she said. "Those treaties talk to the protection of youth and young people, keeping young people out of criminal situations. They speak to fairness and justice and they speak to public health."

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19CN BC: For Cannabis Crusader, Time To Call It A DaySun, 21 May 2017
Source:Victoria Times-Colonist (CN BC) Author:Watts, Richard Area:British Columbia Lines:Excerpt Added:05/24/2017

With major marijuana changes in the air, Ted Smith says moment is right to bow out

Ted Smith, Victoria's longtime cannabis crusader, is calling an end to his activist career.

On Saturday, the 47-year-old got together with friends in Beacon Hill Park to offer thanks, share memories and, of course, enjoy a few joints.

The time, 4:20 p.m. - once a release time from high school detentions - - was selected in remembrance of past misadventures with the rules.

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20 CN BC: LTE: Marijuana Legalization A Bad IdeaSat, 20 May 2017
Source:Penticton Herald (CN BC) Author:Eberle, Shelley Area:British Columbia Lines:31 Added:05/24/2017

Editor: In response to S. Rathwell (letter to the editor; Weed Can Help Our Economy in The Daily Courier on May 17). Pot production might bring a few jobs, but the damage to our social fabric would heavily outweigh any gain.

Marijuana is currently a leading cause of substance dependence, and, if legalized, the increase in users and addiction would be large and rapid. Legal, recreational pot use is not a safe way to relax. It is a psycho-active, addictive substance that affects our youth in a very negative way.

Marijuana is the most commonly abused drug around the world. Those who support its legalization for recreational use fail to recognize that the greatest costs of weed are not related to its prohibition; they are the costs resulting from marijuana use itself.

Shelley Eberle, Penticton

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