Canada marijuana task force releases report on legalization

Now is the time for Canada to move from prohibition and become the largest developed country to establish a well-regulated legal marijuana industry, members of the country’s marijuana task force said Tuesday.

Canada’s marijuana legalization task force has outlined 80 recommendations for the country’s potential legal cannabis regime, including a minimum purchase age of 18; penalties against trafficking and impaired driving; regulations for packaging and pesticides; mail-order delivery and cannabis clubs; decriminalization efforts for minor offenses; and further robust research on the plant for public health, safety and potential medical purposes.
Canada is “well-positioned” to implement a framework for marijuana legalization that would establish a regulated, public health- and research-focused system to displace the entrenched illicit market, heads of the task force said during a news conference Tuesday.

“The prohibitory regime that has existed is not working, and it is not meeting the basic principles of public health and safety that has to be at the core of this kind of public policy,” said Anne McLellan, the former deputy prime minister who serves as chair of the task force.

Canada’s government is expected to develop marijuana legislation in 2017. Financial analysts estimate that Canada’s legal marijuana market could total $4.5 billion by 2021.

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