Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau first revealed his desire to bring down the scourge of marijuana prohibition in the northern nation nearly a year ago. Now, a number of reports show the Canadian government is making good on its promise, with plans to introduce legislation on Thursday to legalize recreational marijuana nationwide.
Although there are still a number of details that will need to be hashed out before Canada’s plan to launch a fully legal pot market comes to fruition, the goal still appears to be giving adults the freedom to purchase weed from their friendly neighborhood dispensary no later than July 2018.
The bill, which is set to be revealed in the next few days, will address the many components of legal marijuana, including age restrictions and home cultivation limits, all of which will need to be negotiated by governing forces this year.
In 2016, a report published by Trudeau’s marijuana task force recommended giving adults 18 and over legal access to marijuana. It seems likely that each province and territory would be given permission to establishing ages for legal pot consumption in a manner similar to alcohol. In some areas, the legal drinking age is 18, while in most jurisdictions only those adults 19 and older are permitted to buy booze.
“I think the proposal for the age of 18, or 19 in some provinces, to align with the [legal drinking age] across the country, is a reasonable compromise,” Trudeau said in December. “We know the largest misdeeds of marijuana use happens at a lower age than 18, 19 years of age, and I think this is a responsible approach that we have found in terms of balance that is both practical and useful.”
A report from CBC News shows that Canadians will likely have the opportunity to grow up to four plants at home for personal use under the nation’s new pot law. But there has been some opposition to this part of the plan coming from the jowls of law enforcement official because some believe home grows will make it even more difficult to keep pot out of the hands of children – the primary objective Trudeau credits for his decision to legalize.
However, there has also been some speculation over the past few months that Trudeau may be backtracking on his promise to legalize. In addition to the barrage of raids that have been allowed to take place under his watch, Canadian Parliament’s Secretary to the Minister of Justice recently told Bloomberg News that the government was not in any hurry to put a recreational marijuana law on the books.
For now, it seems Canada’s mission to end pot prohibition is on course, greatly surpassing the United States on the issue. Although eight states have been allowed to legalize marijuana for recreational use, the current administration still poses a significant threat to the overall stability of the market. In fact, it would take a federal push that resembled what is about to happen in Canada before the cannabis industry could rest easy and conduct their business without the fear of prosecution. Even though legislation aimed at this reform has been introduced in Congress, there is simply not enough support to pass a law.