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1 CN BC: Is This Pot Prohibition 2.0?Fri, 21 Apr 2017
Source:Nelson Star (CN BC) Author:Johnson, Will Area:British Columbia Lines:190 Added:04/22/2017

Nelson-Creston candidate calls federal legislation announcement 'draconian'

The stakes are high.

Members of the Kootenay craft cannabis community are worried federal legalization will leave them out in the cold, and are concerned the new laws will be invasive and draconian - leading some to dub the Cannabis Act "Prohibition 2.0."

With the cannabis industry making up an estimated 25 to 35 per cent of the local economy, the potential effects of legalization on the Nelson community will be far-reaching. Sensible B.C.'s local representative Herb Couch is one of the voices speaking out against elements of the new law and calling on both provincial and municipal politicians to take action.

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2CN AB: Usual Crowd Expected At 4/20 Marijuana EventThu, 20 Apr 2017
Source:Edmonton Journal (CN AB) Author:Wakefield, Jonny Area:Alberta Lines:Excerpt Added:04/22/2017

Edmonton's police chief says he doesn't expect a larger than usual 4/20 gathering Thursday as the city prepares for legal marijuana.

"I imagine we'll get a few people there, but nothing that's really on the radar we're concerned about," Chief Rod Knecht said Wednesday.

The annual smoke-up at the Alberta legislature could be one of the last under existing marijuana laws, as the Trudeau government prepares to legalize the drug.

The Liberals introduced bills this month to legalize and regulate marijuana by July 2018.

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3 CN MB: From Protest To PartyThu, 20 Apr 2017
Source:Winnipeg Free Press (CN MB) Author:Cash, Martin Area:Manitoba Lines:114 Added:04/22/2017

With legalization on the horizon, today's 4/20 gathering will be a celebration

For as long as anyone can remember, the annual 4/20 gathering at the Manitoba legislature grounds was about protesting the country's harsh marijuana laws. Police would be out in force to keep an eye on a rag-tag group of stoners, rarely arresting anyone unless things got out of hand.

This year's event, which begins at noon today, has a much more celebratory tone since legislation is in the works to legalize the recreational use of pot.

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4 CN SN: Letter: Goodale Writes About Marijuana LegalizationWed, 19 Apr 2017
Source:Prince Albert Daily Herald (CN SN) Author:Goodale, Ralph Area:Saskatchewan Lines:115 Added:04/22/2017

Dear editor,

If your objectives are to protect public health and safety, keep marijuana out of the hands of minors and cut illegal profits flowing to organized crime-then the law as it stands today has been an abject failure.

Law enforcement agencies in Canada spend an estimated $2-3 billion a year trying to fight pot, yet Canadian teenagers are among the heaviest users in the western world. And criminals walk away with $7-8 billion every year in illicit proceeds. We have to do better.

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5CN ON: Police To Continue To Enforce Marijuana LawsWed, 19 Apr 2017
Source:Windsor Star (CN ON) Author:Samba, Mugoli Area:Ontario Lines:Excerpt Added:04/22/2017

Chief says officers will arrest and charge users since pot not legal until July 2018

Windsor police Chief Al Frederick says that police will keep enforcing current marijuana laws - including during "4/20" celebrations planned in Windsor on Thursday - despite the Trudeau government's intention to legalize its use.

"Today, marijuana is illegal," Frederick said in a scrum with reporters following the unveiling of Windsor police's 150th anniversary cruiser Tuesday. "And anybody who (illegally) possesses or traffics marijuana today is subject to prosecution. No question."

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6 CN ON: 4-20 Needed More Than Ever: ActivistsThu, 20 Apr 2017
Source:Metro (Ottawa, CN ON) Author:May, Drew Area:Ontario Lines:49 Added:04/22/2017

Weed community isn't fully behind legalization plans

With marijuana legalization tabled - and ahead of April 20, as promised by the governing Liberals - some Ottawa activists say they aren't confident the new laws will reflect the concerns of the cannabis community.

Mike Foster, owner of Crosstown Traffic, a sponsor of Ottawa's 4-20 event, said there will be mixed emotions at the April 20 event on Parliament Hill.

"Some people are going to be celebrating this, what they perceive as a newfound liberation," Foster said. "Anyone who actually reads the whole document is going to realize there's not much there to celebrate."

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7 Canada: Pharmacy Distributors Want In On Canada's Legalized MarijuanaThu, 20 Apr 2017
Source:Sudbury Star (CN ON) Author:Kirkup, Kristy Area:Canada Lines:71 Added:04/22/2017

OTTAWA - The federal government's plans for legalizing recreational marijuana has many would be players looking to carve out a role for themselves in the emerging market, including pharmaceutical distributors who already ship drugs across the country.

The Canadian Association for Pharmacy Distribution Management - a supplier of medicine for pharmacies and hospitals - says it has a ready-made system for marijuana distribution that they say is far superior to mail-order pot.

Pharmaceutical distributors offer a more appropriate vehicle for the recreational marijuana market, CEO David Johnston said in an interview Wednesday, noting they already have the infrastructure in place to handle potential recalls, be it in downtown Toronto or remote northern Ontario.

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8 Canada: O'Leary Backs Marijuana LegalizationThu, 20 Apr 2017
Source:Globe and Mail (Canada) Author:Stone, Laura Area:Canada Lines:140 Added:04/22/2017

Other Conservative candidates have expressed mixed reactions to the Liberals' proposal to overturn prohibition of the drug

Conservative leadership candidates are split over marijuana policy, with Kevin O'Leary the only serious contender voicing support for legalization and Maxime Bernier refusing to say whether he'll vote in favour of the Liberal legislation to lift the prohibition on the recreational use of cannabis.

Mr. O'Leary said up to 30 per cent of the population uses the drug medicinally and recreationally, and he believes the Conservative Party membership understands it has to embrace "a much larger constituency."

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9 CN BC: 4/20 Organizers Say Protests Still NecessaryThu, 20 Apr 2017
Source:Georgia Straight, The (CN BC) Author:Lupick, Travis Area:British Columbia Lines:110 Added:04/22/2017

With Canada now well on its way to legal recreational marijuana, what is there left for activists to protest at Vancouver's annual 4/20 event?

Plenty, according to organizers of the massive gathering, which is scheduled to happen this Thursday (April 20) at Sunset Beach in the city's West End.

In a telephone interview, Canada's most prominent advocate for marijuana reform, Jodie Emery, was highly critical of legislation the Liberal government tabled in Parliament on April 13.

"It is prohibition 2.0," she told the Georgia Straight. "It is not legalization. It is a continuation of the kind of criminalization that we've seen before, with the introduction of even harsher laws that will victimize even more peaceful Canadians."

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10Canada: Privatize Marijuana Sales, Think Tank RecommendsThu, 20 Apr 2017
Source:National Post (Canada) Author:Freeman, Sunny Area:Canada Lines:Excerpt Added:04/22/2017

Marijuana should be sold through independent retailers rather than provincially owned outlets to eliminate conflicts of interest between public health and profit imperatives, the C.D. Howe Institute urges in a new letter to be released Thursday.

Research fellow Anindya Sen's letter to the Liberals' marijuana point man Bill Blair argues against provincially owned marijuana outlets, a model not used in any other recreational market.

Some provincial governments, including British Columbia, Ontario and Manitoba, have expressed support for selling marijuana through provincially owned liquor outlets. That could raise questions about whether they'd have incentive to encourage marijuana use to bolster provincial revenues, the way some advertise for their provincially owned alcohol outlets, Sen, who is also an economics professor at the University of Waterloo, wrote in the letter to Blair.

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11 CN AB: Local Leaders Skeptical About Marijuana LegalizationWed, 19 Apr 2017
Source:St. Albert Gazette (CN AB) Author:Henderson, Jennifer Area:Alberta Lines:114 Added:04/22/2017

Last week the Liberal government tabled its long awaited legislation to legalize marijuana but provinces and municipalities are already concerned with the costs and responsibilities associated with it.

St. Albert MP Michael Cooper and Mayor Nolan Crouse are both concerned that the federal government is downloading the responsibilities to the provinces and municipalities without providing any financial support.

The bills tabled on Thursday outline the federal government's guidelines for legalization, which they plan to achieve by July 1, 2018.

The government plans to legalize the possession of 30 grams of dried cannabis for Canadian adults over the age of 18. Provinces have the option to raise the age if they see fit. Canadians will be able to buy the cannabis through the mail or at provincially regulated retail spaces.

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12 Canada: Canada's Catholic Bishops Warn Against Marijuana LegalizationTue, 18 Apr 2017
Source:Catholic Register, The (Canada) Author:Gyapong, Deborah Area:Canada Lines:106 Added:04/22/2017

OTTAWA - Legalizing marijuana shows a "disregard" for public health and safety, Canada's Catholic bishops charge.

The bishops' statement came one day before the Liberal government announced the introduction April 13 in the House of Commons of the Cannabis Act, which will eventually "legalize, regulate and restrict access" to marijuana.

"From the standpoint of public health, not only does this course of action appear to be unwise, it is potentially dangerous," said the statement signed by the president of the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops (CCCB), Bishop Douglas Crosby of Hamilton. "The very significant health risks associated with the use of cannabis are widely recognized, particularly in young people."

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13 CN AB: Creating Community One Puff At A TimeThu, 20 Apr 2017
Source:Vue Weekly (CN AB) Author:Boissonneault, Stephan Area:Alberta Lines:87 Added:04/22/2017

Cannabis Clubs of Canada to be community focused hub for marijuana users

Since the Liberal's announcement of marijuana legislation, the media has been in an absolute frenzy, attempting to answer the question of what regulation in Canada will look like. In this pot-centric media storm no one has really approached the question of how recreational use will happen in a community setting.

Enter the Cannabis Clubs of Canada. Much like Spain's underground cannabis club scene, these collective hubs will allow people to consume marijuana on club property without worry.

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14 CN AB: Alberta Sees Costs, No Cash Cow From Federal CannabisWed, 19 Apr 2017
Source:Banff Crag & Canyon, The (CN AB) Author:Griwkowsky, Catherine Area:Alberta Lines:92 Added:04/22/2017

It's going to be challenging to get the province ready for the federal government's deadline of July 1, 2018, for legalized marijuana in the country, says Premier Rachel Notley.

Bills tabled Thursday in the House of Commons in Ottawa kickstart a national move toward legalization of recreational pot for people 18 and older.

A lot of decisions in the "very ambitious project" will be left to provinces to figure out before the law takes effect, Notley told reporters Thursday at the Alberta legislature.

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15 CN BC: Maple Ridge Doctor Wants Limits On Recreational MarijuanaWed, 19 Apr 2017
Source:Maple Ridge News (CN BC) Author:Melnychuk, Phil Area:British Columbia Lines:124 Added:04/22/2017

Limit potency and amount for ages 21-25

Maple Ridge psychiatrist Dr. Biju Mathew is joining others in his profession in calling for the federal government to make legal age for smoking marijuana 21.

"Marijuana shouldn't be used on kids below 25," Mathew said.

The Cannabis Act, introduced by the federal government last week, calls for the minimum age forusing recreational marijuana to be 18, although provinces have the option to raise that.

"They have [proposed to] legalized pot, and they've also come up with stricter regulations, but they have lowered the age to 18, which is very disturbing," Mathew, president of the B.C. Psychiatric Association, said of the federal government.

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16 CN MB: High Spirits May Change Tone Of Winnipeg's 4-20 EventThu, 20 Apr 2017
Source:Metro (Winnipeg, CN MB) Author:Jones, Braeden Area:Manitoba Lines:68 Added:04/22/2017

Like clockwork, buds burn on April 20-but in light of the federal government's marijuana legalization plans, the organizer of Winnipeg's 4/20 event says the tone has changed.

"For the longest time, cannabis-related events were protests-especially 4/20-that had kind of hit a stalemate," said local cannabis advocate Steven Stairs. "We show up once a year, (authorities) let us do this, and we're probably showing up next year because nothing's changingÂ….

"Well, this year things are actually changing."

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17 CN AB: The War On Deadly OpioidsWed, 19 Apr 2017
Source:St. Albert Gazette (CN AB) Author:Henderson, Jennifer Area:Alberta Lines:135 Added:04/22/2017

How drug units deal with fentanyl

The death toll for fentanyl continues to rise in 2017, with nearly double the number of deaths being reported in the first six weeks of the year.

According to Health Canada, from Jan. 1 to Feb, 11, 51 people died from overdosing on fentanyl. In 2016 during the same six weeks, 28 Albertans died as a result of a fentanyl overdose.

The drug was first found in St. Albert in 2014 and since then the St. Albert RCMP's drug unit said that currently there is at least one pill found in around 80 per cent of their overall drug cases.

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18 CN AB: Concerns Sparked Over Federal Cannabis LegislationThu, 20 Apr 2017
Source:Airdrie City View (CN AB) Author:Waldner, Christina Area:Alberta Lines:96 Added:04/22/2017

he federal government outlined its plans for the legalization of cannabis April 13, which includes regulations for the production, distribution, sale and possession of the drug while introducing strict penalties for its misuse.

"Today, we are following through on our commitment to introduce comprehensive legislation to legalize, strictly regulate and restrict access to cannabis and to create new laws to punish more severely those who drive under its influence," Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada Jody Wilson-Raybould said in a release issued by the government.

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19 CN BC: Police, Organizers Ready For 4-20 RallyThu, 20 Apr 2017
Source:Metro (Vancouver, CN BC) Author:Li, Wanyee Area:British Columbia Lines:76 Added:04/22/2017

Beach Avenue along Sunset Beach closed Thursday

The stage is set for today's 4-20 pot rally at Sunset Beach in Vancouver and organizers say the annual protest is here to stay despite the federal government's intention to legalize pot next year.

The unpermitted event, which drew 25,000 people to the beach last year, will feature more than 300 vendor booths and live music.

Park board commissioners voted against giving 4-20 event organizers a permit for this year's event but that hasn't changed things on the ground, said marijuana advocate, Dana Larsen.

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20 CN AB: Pot Law Draws Mixed ReactionThu, 20 Apr 2017
Source:Cochrane Eagle (CN AB) Author:Seewalt, Lindsay Area:Alberta Lines:110 Added:04/22/2017

Last week the federal government announced it will move forward with its highly-anticipated and contentious pledge to legalize recreational marijuana.

What might possibly be the most memorable piece of legislation undertaken by the Justin Trudeau Liberals will most certainly result in polarizing political and personal stances.

Social media and online reactions range from cheers to fears - including criticisms that the whole movement is nothing short of a government tax grab that has parent and landlord advocates up in arms.

"I've witnessed Justin Trudeau try to manage the economy, electoral reform Â… I'm not sure I have faith in his ability to protect kids from pot," said Banff-Airdrie Conservative MP Blake Richards.

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