Legalization Of Cannabis In Canada
Cannabis is now legal in Canada, so what are the things that you need to know about the legalization of marijuana. How will people purchase cannabis and what sort of regulations in regards to age or where marijuana will be available for purchase. Are you allowed to grow cannabis in your private residence? What is cannabis going to cost in relation to the black market price? How does legalization affect you when leaving or entering the country? Lastly, could consuming marijuana jeopardize my job and what are the rules around driving after consuming cannabis? We will be covering all of these crucial issues below so that you can have a better understanding of how Canada’s legalization of marijuana effects you.
How do I purchase Marijuana Legally in Canada?
Even though cannabis is now legal across the entire country, there are still different regulations depending on what province you reside. There are a few main distinctions that can change from providence to providence those are age limits and retail structures. The minimum age limit for purchasing and consuming cannabis vary but most providences uses the same rules as alcohol.
Can I Grow Marijuana at Home in Canada?
In most of the provinces and territories, adults are allowed to possess four cannabis plants per household for recreational use. This amount is the limit that was set by the federal government in June when they passed the Cannabis Act. However, Quebec and Manitoba are the two territories that are still holding strict regulations on growing cannabis in your private residence. Both of the territories opposed that decision and enforced their own rules banning residents from growing their own cannabis plants in their home. This ban on personal cultivation is a decision that many people believe will eventually result in a constitutional change.
How Much Does Marijuana Cost and How Much Can I Buy?
The cost and success of Canada’s move to legalize cannabis will depend on the price that Canadians will pay per gram of legal cannabis in relation to the black market price. If the worth of legal marijuana ends up being more expensive than the cannabis on the black market, there will be very little incentive for Canadians to switch from purchasing from their current and cheaper source.
Some examples of current prices by territory look like this. New Brunswick prices will range from $8 – $16 per gram, Northwest territories will be between $8 – $15 per gram, New Foundland and Labrador $6 – $13, Quebec will be starting around $7, and the price per gram in the Yukon will start about $8. Ontario’s government has been very quiet in revealing their pricing, but should be at a rate which will be competitive with black market prices or illegal dispensaries.
All provinces and territories differ on how much you can possess and where you can consume cannabis legally. In most provinces, you can possess up to 30 grams of cannabis flower, but in Quebec, you can have up to 150 grams in your home. In New Brunswick, you are legally allowed to consume cannabis in your private residence, but you would need permission from the owner of the residence if you are smoking in any other home or building.
How Does Legalization Affect the Border?
Even though the U.S. sees its states rapidly move towards legalization, cannabis is still illegal under the U.S. federal law. Before legalization went through in Canada, Ottawa made a statement to Canadian travelers that any prior use of marijuana or any other substance prohibited by U.S. laws could deny you entry into the US. Officials at the US border stated that nothing has changed if you have a violated any U.S. laws that made you dismissable from the U.S. It remains a mystery as to whether travelers will be questioned more frequently in regards to prior cannabis use. There will also be changes for travelers making their way into Canada, Border Service Agency guards will now have to ask every person crossing the border about cannabis possession. Anyone traveling to Canada can expect to see a question about their cannabis use on declaration documents.
How Could Consuming Cannabis Affect my Job?
Knowing if consuming cannabis affects your job depends on the field or industry you work in and more specifically your employer. When legalization was just about to go through there was an increase in Canadian companies that updated their policies related to cannabis, this was especially true with companies where their employees work in high-risk positions.
Recently Air Canada and WestJet have decided to prohibit all of their employees in flight operations and aircraft maintenance from using any form of cannabis at any time; this is both on duty and off duty. The regulations for police officers vary widely across the country as well. Calgary’s police service forbids cannabis consumption altogether, while Vancouver police officers are required to self-evaluate whether they are fit to perform their duties.
As the months continue experts say that rules and regulations around cannabis and the workplace will begin to evolve as we get more research and information on the industry as a whole. Ultimately it’s better to be clear on your employer’s rules about cannabis whether you are just beginning a new job or have been working somewhere for a long time, as these rules vary employer to employer.
What are the Laws Around Driving with Marijuana in Canada?
Now that legalization passed in June, Law enforcement officials can conduct roadside saliva tests to drivers that they suspect to under the influence of drugs. Drivers will be treated and punished in relation to the amount of THC is found in their blood, which is the primary psychoactive substance in cannabis. Divers found with amounts of THC in their system between two and five nanograms could face up to a $1000 fine. Drivers found with more than five nanograms or who were consuming alcohol and cannabis at the same time could face steeper fines and even jail time. Drivers convicted to the more severe amounts of THC in their system could face up to 10 years in prison. Statistics show that nearly five percent of Canadians say that they have been a passenger in a vehicle driven by someone who had consumed cannabis within two hours of driving. Ultimately, the best option is not to drive a vehicle under the influence or ride with a driver who is under the influence of cannabis.
What are the Health Effects of Consuming Cannabis?
In the weeks, months, and years to come, we are going to see much more research on cannabis and health, concerning both potential risks and health benefits. Canada’s federal government has a website outlining the health of related to cannabis use which includes short-term effects and long-term effects. This effort for more research and information od the medical benefits of cannabis will only grow stronger and stronger now that Canada has passed legalization. Canada is scheduled to spend more than $100 million over the next six years on cannabis education in relation to awareness, public education, and surveillance.