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1 US OH: Ohio Health Officials: Synthetic Marijuana Laced With RatFri, 06 Apr 2018
Source:Columbus Dispatch (OH) Author:Neese, Alissa Widman Area:Ohio Lines:64 Added:04/11/2018

State health officials issued a public warning Friday about a severe bleeding outbreak in the Midwest that has been linked to synthetic marijuana contaminated with a rat poison ingredient.

No cases have been reported in Ohio as of Friday.

A total of 94 people have exhibited symptoms in the past month in other states.

Most were in Illinois, which has reported 89 cases, including two deaths, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Cases also have been reported in Missouri, Wisconsin and Maryland, and there is a suspected case in Pennsylvania.

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2 US OH: Training Teaches Case Workers How To Find Drug ParaphernaliaTue, 10 Apr 2018
Source:Blade, The (Toledo, OH) Author:Mester, Alexandra Area:Ohio Lines:98 Added:04/10/2018

Books, CDs, tennis balls, and a box of candy are just some of the places in which drugs, drug paraphernalia, and sexually-explicit photographs are hidden in this scene.

A permanent marker, a hair brush, a tennis ball, a decorative wooden plaque bearing the word "faith." All are seemingly innocuous items in a teenage girl's bedroom.

But each was hiding a secret during the "Hidden in Plain Sight" training offered by Lucas County Children Services and the Drug Abuse Response Team of the Lucas County Sheriff's Office. Dozens of attendees, most of them employees with children services, rifled through the simulated bedroom Tuesday to search for more than 50 hidden items indicative of risky behavior like drug use and sexual activity.

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3 CN NS: Marijuana Outlet Crackdown Makes No Sense, Says CriminologistWed, 14 Mar 2018
Source:Truro Daily News (CN NS) Author:McPhee, John Area:Nova Scotia Lines:72 Added:03/17/2018

The legalization of pot may be looming but that doesn't mean police are backing off their crackdown on the "grey" marijuana market.

Most recently, RCMP in Colchester County raided the Community Compassion Centre in Bible Hill. They seized cash, marijuana, marijuana derivatives and drug paraphernalia, and charged Ricky Joseph Leclerc, 51, of Upper Kennetcook.

He's scheduled to appear in Nova Scotia provincial court Friday.

"The RCMP will continue to work within the existing legislation under the Controlled Drug and Substances Act," RCMP spokesman Cpl. Dal Hutchinson said Monday in an email. "If we determine that there is a violation of the legislation, we will take appropriate action."

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4 CN NS: Marijuana Dispenser Charged Following Second RaidTue, 13 Mar 2018
Source:Truro Daily News (CN NS) Author:Sullivan, Harry Area:Nova Scotia Lines:43 Added:03/16/2018

The owner of a Bible Hill marijuana dispensary has been charged for the second time in six months with possession for the purpose of trafficking.

Ricky Joseph Leclerc, 51, of Upper Kennetcook, was arrested after police executed a search warrant at the Community Compassion Centre, a marijuana storefront on Pictou Road.

Leclerc is to appear in court in Truro on March 21 to enter a plea to the charge.

The RCMP said in a news release that members of the Colchester County Integrated Street Crime Enforcement Unit had seized a quantity of cash, marijuana, marijuana derivatives and drug paraphernalia during their search last Friday.

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5 US FL: Ex-DEA Chief Blasts White-Collar PushersThu, 01 Mar 2018
Source:Sarasota Herald-Tribune (FL) Author:Cox, Billy Area:Florida Lines:55 Added:03/05/2018

SARASOTA - When the Drug Enforcement Administration was formed in 1973, roughly 2,000 Americans were dying from overdoses each week, largely from heroin injections. In 2016 alone, thanks to a deregulated pharmaceutical industry, fatal overdoses -- 80 percent opioid related - -- claimed 63,000 lives.

Or, as Peter Bensinger pointed out Thursday morning, opium-derived drugs have exacted a higher death toll in a single year than nearly two decades of fighting in the Vietnam War.

Appointed by President Ford in 1976 to become the nation's second DEA director, Bensinger detailed the history of America's relationship with the poppy to a Sarasota Institute of Lifetime Learning crowd gathered at First United Methodist Church. As the leading cause of death for U.S. residents under 50, the toll from opioids and its synthetic counterparts today would've been unimaginable to Bensinger when he was the nation's top drug cop.

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6US MN: Minnesota's Marijuana Moment: Why To Legalize, By Someone WhoSat, 17 Feb 2018
Source:Minneapolis Star-Tribune (MN) Author:Scott, Paul John Area:Minnesota Lines:Excerpt Added:02/22/2018

With decriminalization advancing coast to coast, legalized pot appears on its way, and Minnesota will light up the debate this year. Change is overdue.

I don't smoke marijuana. There are secret purchases required, plus the learning of code, dealer etiquette, dosing expertise, exotic strains, the latest artisanal delivery systems, and it all sounds way too complicated.

Also, because it's easy to forget this detail, pot is illegal.

But even if pot were decriminalized tomorrow - a proposal on the table at the State Capitol - the chances of my racing out to score some "Chronicles of Narnia" and then heading home to roll up a fatty are, well, slim. Unlike Bill Clinton, the one time I did blaze up, over 20 years ago, I inhaled quite deeply enough to find the effect unpleasant. Some of us have all the feelings of alienation and existential weirdness you could ask for, thank you very much.

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7 CN AB: Doobie-Dos And Don'tsSat, 17 Feb 2018
Source:Lethbridge Herald (CN AB) Author:Bennett, Dean Area:Alberta Lines:96 Added:02/17/2018

Alberta outlines specifics on cannabis sales

Alberta expects to issue 250 licences for cannabis stores this year, and says anyone who wants to run a weed shop will first undergo an exhaustive check ranging from tax records to mob ties. "We believe that our regulations will strike the right balance," Justice Minister Kathleen Ganley said Friday in Calgary as she unveiled the new regulations for marijuana distribution.

"The system that we are putting in place in Alberta will create an environment in which retailers can legally sell cannabis and provide access to safe products while keeping the health and safety of Albertans in mind."

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8 CN NS: From Bongs To Pipes And VaporizersTue, 13 Feb 2018
Source:Cape Breton Post (CN NS) Author:Shannon, Chris Area:Nova Scotia Lines:101 Added:02/13/2018

With the legalization of recreational cannabis, local merchants look to capitalize on the sale of marijuana merchandise

Everything from bongs to pipes and vaporizers will likely become commonplace in local smoke shops as recreational cannabis sales will become legal this summer.

The Nova Scotia Liquor Corp., which will operate marijuana dispensaries from nine liquor outlets in the province, has said it will leave the sale of cannabis accessories and related products to the private sector.

That news was received well by smoke and e-cigarette shops that are hoping to expand their line of products to include accessories used by marijuana users.

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9 CN ON: Queen's Park Gears Up For Cannabis MonopolyMon, 15 Jan 2018
Source:Toronto Star (CN ON) Author:Benzie, Robert Area:Ontario Lines:130 Added:01/15/2018

Ontario will be biggest legal marijuana dealer in Canada, possibly in entire world

Charles Sousa was half-joking about toking.

"I was with some high school buddies last week - you remember the guys from high school - and they said to me, 'Who'd have thought it would be you that would one day aspire to become the world's biggest pot dealer?' " the Ontario finance minister said last fall.

"My parents would be so proud. I'm not so sure about my daughter, who's sitting right here. But I guess it makes sense - I was raised in Kensington Market," he quipped.

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10 CN BC: Search Of Phone Called Into QuestionFri, 12 Jan 2018
Source:Penticton Herald (CN BC) Author:Boyd, Dale Area:British Columbia Lines:65 Added:01/12/2018

The methods Penticton police used to search phones connected to a drug investigation were again called into question on Thursday in B.C. Supreme Court. Jennifer Montgomery, 31, is facing one charge of possession of methamphetamine for the purpose of trafficking and two counts of simple possession of heroin and methamphetamine. Her trial began Wednesday.

Montgomery's phone was seized by police after a search warrant was executed June 22, 2016, at her Penticton home, where RCMP Const. Chad Jackson testified drugs and paraphernalia associated with drug dealing were found.

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11CN AB: Head Shops Pipe Up Over Looming Pot LegalizationSat, 23 Dec 2017
Source:Calgary Herald (CN AB) Author:Kaufmann, Bill Area:Alberta Lines:Excerpt Added:12/27/2017

With the coming switch to legal sales, shops hope to keep their market niche

After decades of trail-blazing cannabis-related retail - often under police scrutiny - Calgary head shops say legal recreational marijuana offers them a hazy future.

Despite a perception looming legislative changes might affirm their bong-and-roach-clip business model, those first in on cannabis monetization say the coming reality leaves them in uncharted waters.

It's not entirely clear what head shops' role will be in the sale of legal bud, or if coming pot dispensaries will burn their business by also selling accessories, said Fred Pattison, owner of the Next Level store. Even marijuana's mainstreaming and the expansion of e-retail poses a threat, he said.

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12 CN AB: Trying To Stay AheadSat, 23 Dec 2017
Source:Calgary Sun, The (CN AB) Author:Kaufmann, Bill Area:Alberta Lines:86 Added:12/27/2017

Paraphernalia retailers wait for smoke to clear as legalization of marijuana draws near

After decades of trailblazing cannabis-related retail - often under police scrutiny - Calgary head shops say legal recreational marijuana offers them a hazy future.

Despite a perception looming legislative changes might affirm their bong and roach clip business model, those first in on cannabis monetization say the coming reality leaves them in uncharted waters.

It's not entirely clear what head shops' role will be in the sale of legal bud, or if coming pot dispensaries will burn their business by also selling accessories, said Fred Pattison, owner of the Next Level store.

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13 CN ON: Peer-Based Program Aims To Reduce Unsafe Needle DisposalTue, 19 Dec 2017
Source:Record, The (Kitchener, CN ON) Author:Weidner, Johanna Area:Ontario Lines:102 Added:12/24/2017

CAMBRIDGE - An innovative new peer-based pilot project will be launched in Cambridge early next year with the aim of curbing improper needle disposal in the community.

The project is a partnership between Region of Waterloo Public Health, which will provide funding, Sanguen Health Centre and the City of Cambridge.

Along with removing needles through patrols and education, it will offer employment and skill development to people who have experienced substance abuse; they will be hired as the peer workers.

"There is no harm in trying other methods to connect people and get them on board," said Violet Umanetz, Sanguen's outreach manager. "The peers do so well working in the community."

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14CN QU: Life Cut Short By A Dangerous DrugThu, 21 Dec 2017
Source:Montreal Gazette (CN QU) Author:Fidelman, Charlie Area:Quebec Lines:Excerpt Added:12/21/2017

No one forced Junior Hernandez to swallow the fentanyl, his grieving partner says, but did he understand it could kill him?

Part Four in a series of profiles about the escalating opioid crisis in Quebec.

Before his partner Junior Hernandez died of a fentanyl-related overdose, Christophe Cote says he didn't know much about the drug.

Just before dawn, Junior Hernandez and his sky-is-the-limit friends spilled out of a downtown bar.

They were heading to a friend's place to continue the revelry - drinking, doing coke and ecstasy. Once the drugs ran out, they called a dealer, hopping a taxi to his place. There, they found a stash of tiny, unfamiliar pills called fentanyl. The party ended hours later with Hernandez, 35, lying on a cold slab in a Montreal morgue. Hernandez didn't see the end coming. Neither did his friends.

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15 CN ON: CleanupMon, 18 Dec 2017
Source:Toronto Sun (CN ON) Author:Levy, Sue-Ann Area:Ontario Lines:92 Added:12/18/2017

Where have all the dirty needles gone? Mayor's efforts have made a difference

This past Thursday, on a wickedly cold afternoon, I combed the same Yonge-Dundas Sts.-area alleyways where dirty needles have proliferated, particularly since the opening of Toronto's first harm-reduction site.

While we saw plenty of drug paraphernalia buried in the snow - orange needle caps, blue gloves, water bottles used as bongs and even remnants of a Naloxone kit - we found no needles.

Perhaps the cold contributed to the fact that patrons of The Works on Victoria St. are not shooting up outside. However, Mayor John Tory's cleanup efforts appear to be working.

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16 CN BC: More Needles Found At SchoolFri, 08 Dec 2017
Source:Penticton Western (CN BC) Author:Bowie, Tara Area:British Columbia Lines:98 Added:12/08/2017

Like all parents, Nadine Remington wants to know her nine-year-old son is safe while on school property.

But, the increasing problem of drug use on school property after hours is heightening fears for her and other parents.

Earlier this week, Remington was told by her son who is in Grade 4 at Queen's Park School that people were living in a shed on the school's property and that he had seen a needle and matches nearby.

After a similar experience of the boy finding drug paraphernalia at KVR Middle School while at camp this summer, she took his claims seriously and headed out to the school to see it herself. Remington and her husband didn't find anyone in the shed, but there was evidence suggesting someone was living in it recently and a needle on the ground at the door.

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17 CN BC: Metro Municipalities Brace For Cannabis Retail Gold RushWed, 29 Nov 2017
Source:Business In Vancouver (CN BC) Author:Santvoort, Albert Van Area:British Columbia Lines:247 Added:11/29/2017

Some cities want to prohibit all recreational marijuana sales; others have already started licensing dispensaries

Ottawa's Cannabis Act, Bill C-45, passed third reading in the House of Commons on November 27, little more than seven months before the federal government's July 1, 2018, target date for legalizing recreational marijuana. The bill must be approved by the Senate and achieve Royal Assent but the writing is on the wall that legalization is on the way.

The B.C. government has yet to reveal how it plans to regulate retail sales for non-medicinal marijuana.

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18 US IN: Indiana Students Say They Caught Teacher Using Cocaine InSat, 25 Nov 2017
Source:Detroit Free Press (MI)          Area:Indiana Lines:39 Added:11/28/2017

An Indiana high school teacher was arrested on drug charges Wednesday after her students said they saw her using cocaine in her classroom.

Lake Central High School junior Will Rogers told WGN9 he shot video of the incident through a classroom window.

"She's in the corner, hiding with a chair and a book and what appears to be cocaine, putting it into lines," Rogers told the TV station. "When I actually watched the footage again and again and I just realized that my english teacher just did cocaine."

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19CN AB: Suncor Cites 73 Incidents In Push For Drug TestingTue, 28 Nov 2017
Source:Edmonton Journal (CN AB) Author:Kent, Gordon Area:Alberta Lines:Excerpt Added:11/28/2017

Suncor faces "profound problems" with drugs and alcohol at its oilsands operations, including accidents, injuries and death, according to documents filed to support the company's push for increased testing.

The energy giant wants to start random drug and alcohol testing Friday in the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo (RMWB), more than five years after Unifor local 707A won an injunction putting the proposed program on hold until an arbitration board's decision.

Although the board sided with the union, a judge later overturned the ruling, a verdict upheld in September by the Alberta Court of Appeal, which ordered a new arbitration hearing. Unifor, which is seeking leave to appeal to the Supreme Court of Canada, will ask for another injunction Thursday, but Suncor argues in court documents there has been 73 safety incidents in the last four years where workers tested positive for drugs or alcohol. These include a driver whose idling, unattended truck rolled into a gas oil unit; a forklift operator lifting a 4,500-kg pipe that rolled to the ground; and a dozer driver whose machine tipped over, environment, health and safety vice-president Mike Agnew states in an affidavit.

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20CN QU: Quebec Pot Bill Seeks Aresponsible ConsumptionaFri, 17 Nov 2017
Source:Ottawa Citizen (CN ON) Author:Authier, Philip Area:Quebec Lines:Excerpt Added:11/21/2017

Liberal government to sell pot through SAQ subsidiary stores, price not set yet

Forced into the pot business by the federal government, the province of Quebec tabled a law Thursday that imposes a strict framework for the consumption, sale and distribution of marijuana.

Bill 157 - an act to constitute the Societe quebecoise du cannabis, or SQC - was formally presented in the legislature by the minister for rehabilitation, youth protection, public health and healthy living, Lucie Charlebois.

As expected after almost a year of testing the water with the public, Quebec has opted for a focus on averting potential social, health and safety problems that it fears could follow the liberalization of the use of the drug for recreational purposes.

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