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Policy Briefing: Cannabis
In the run-up to legalization, the Liberal government’s point person was then parliamentary secretary Bill Blair, who stressed they wanted to regulate, but not normalize, the use of cannabis. The Hill Times photograph by Andrew Meade

Focus on restricting access to weed has hampered crackdown on black market

The feds’ zeal in pursuing its overarching goals has resulted in an industry that lags the U.S. and elsewhere in brand awareness, and is attracting only a fraction of users away from the illicit or legacy market.
Canada has a major opportunity to grab global leadership here and build a strong, research-based economy with significant positive impacts. Let’s not let the opportunity slip away.
Health Canada has set the per package THC dosage limit at 10 milligrams for cannabis edibles, which will soon be available for recreational users in store.
We can’t lose sight of the fact that while it is positive that most young people are not using cannabis, for those who do, we need to provide education so they can make decisions that will keep them as safe as possible.
There has been a tension at the heart of the cannabis legalization project from its very beginning. Its two main objectives are, to a great extent, in contradiction.
Given the supply and access issues which have plagued the first year of legal sales, it is no surprise that the black market continues to thrive.
Perhaps the co-operation and collaboration required within a minority government will create space for further—and more progressive and meaningful—amendments to C-93.

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