Posts Tagged ‘canada medical marijuana’

Marijuana Growers’ Kids In Better Health According To Canadian Study

Canada grow roomBy Steve Elliott of Toke of the Town

A new study from Canada flies in the face of stereotypes regarding the offspring of marijuana-growing parents. Children from homes where cannabis is grown were healthy and drug-free, according to the study — in fact, healthier than other children — leading to questions about why such kids are often removed from their homes.

The research from the Motherisk Program at Toronto’s Hospital for Sick Children indicates the automatic removal of kids from marijuana-growing parents can be worse for the children than allowing them to stay at home, according to Gideon Koren, a University of Toronto professor and the program’s director, reports CBC News.

“After examining 75 of the kids over several years, we came to very clear conclusions that a vast majority of these kids are doing well,” Koren said. “Well fed, well kept, doing well in school and developing well.”

“In fact, the health problems found in this population were actually fewer than those in the general Canadian population,” according to a news release from the Hospital for Sick Children.

Children often enjoyed the lifestyle benefits of having high-income parents — even though that income is made illegally — and taking them away often “does a lot of damage,” Koren said.

“Taking a small child from his or her parents in a well-adapted environment causes fear, anxiety, confusion and sadness — everything that comes from separation,” he said.

When children are found in homes identified as marijuana-growing operations, they are usually removed, separating them from their parents and often placing them into foster care.

The Hospital for Sick Children examined 75 kids between 2006 and 2010 from Ontario’s York Region, just north of Toronto.

canada marijuanaSince 2006, child-welfare workers have learned more about the effects marijuana grow-ops have on children and have changed how they maintain the children’s safety, according to Patrick Lake, executive director of the York Region Children’s Aid Society.

“We have developed a more customize and comprehensive process to determine best response, on a case-by-case basis, while looking for ways to safely maintain children with their parents or relatives,” Lake said.

This was the first study done on the topic, and the findings mean authorities will now see these children differently, according to Koren.

“When police and children’s aid go into that situation, they have to look much more carefully on what happened to that child, and now blanket-wise moving kids out of their homes,” he said.

Article From Toke of the Town and republished with special permission.

Canada: Marijuana Arrests On The Rise

Canada’s crime rate has dropped to its lowest level in almost four decades, according to Statistics Canada, but marijuana-related arrests are dramatically increasing.

Stats Canada shows that 58,000 Canadians were arrested for cannabis possession in 2010, a number that is 14 percent higher than the year before, reports Renee Bernard at News 1130.
Pot smokers are being unfairly targeted by the Harper government, according to Jacob Hunter with the Beyond Prohibition Foundation.

freemarcarrest flip jacob hunter.png
Photo: I Love Weed
Jacob Hunter of the Beyond Prohibition Foundation, left, is arrested June 10 at a “Free Marc” protest in Ontario.
​ ​”There’s been very little evidence of any increase in use in Canada, but there seems to be a huge amount more attention being paid to just simple marijuana possession,” Hunter said. “Both the arrests for production and possession of cocaine and other drugs have gone down.”
The crackdown on pot use is a huge waste of money, according to Hunter, given that a large number of Canadians support legalization.
“The great irony of all this is that of every poll conducted in the last 10 years, more Canadians support the legalization of marijuana than actually voted for a Conservative candidate in the last election,” Hunter said.
The crackdown on simple marijuana possession is incredibly costly and ultimately futile, Hunter said.
“It’s become clear what this government’s priorities are,” Hunter said. “A crackdown on simple marijuana possession, mandatory minimum sentences for growing even one marijuana plant, and a dismantling of the medical marijuana program.
“This is nothing less than a total war on marijuana,” Hunter said.
“What we are seeing is a coordinated effort led by the Conservative government to crack down on simple marijuana possession as part of a multi-billion dollar increase in the war on drugs,” said Kirk Tousaw, executive director of the Beyond Prohibition Foundation, reports Phillip Smith at
“Why? Why did 58,000 Canadians need to be arrested over a plant that more Canadians want legalized than voted for Conservative candidates?” Tousaw asked. “Why is Mr. Harper spending billions to arrest Canadians for simple marijuana possession?”

Canada: Medical Marijuana Shop Owner Slams Police After Raid

The owner of a medical marijuana dispensary in Langley, British Columbia is protesting a police raid during which officers confiscated about four kilograms of cannabis meant for sick people.

Randy Caine, 57, who once challenged Canada’s marijuana laws all the way to the Supreme Court, said helping people with chronic pain should not be a crime, reports Kent Spencer at The Province.
“If my greatest fault was being overly helpful to sick people, is that a criminal offense?” Caine, owner of Langley Medical Marijuana Dispensary, said on Friday.
“I have been transparent about medical assistance with the authorities from the start,” Caine said. “I had no idea they were this concerned. I was blindsided.”
Five RCMP officers wearing bulletproof jackets executed a search warrant on July 19, claiming they’d received “numerous” complaints about Caine’s operation.

Photo: Langley Advance
Randy Caine in front of the Langley Medical Marijuana Dispensary
​Constable Jillian Roberts said up to four kilograms of marijuana was seized, as well as cannabis-infused brownies and cookies.
She said the dispensary is not legally authorized “by any authority or legislation in Canada.”
But Caine said he has legitimacy — a license issued by Health Canada. The agency has issued 10,000 medical marijuana licenses.
However, Caine admits he was distributing to some 200 patients, even though his license permitted only two.
He justified the difference on the basis of a 2009 B.C. Supreme Court decision concerning a case about patients’ rights.
In that case, Madam Justice M. Marvyn Koenigsberg struck down a section of law which said, in effect, that designated growers can only grow for a single person.
Dispensary manager Carol Gwilt admitted the relevant laws are unclear.
“Medical marijuana is a gray market, but it’s a necessary market,” Gwilt said. “We’re a small business operated as a community-based model.”
Caine said he got his marijuana from small private growers who are not connected to the illegal gang-based cannabis trade in B.C.
He said clients come by appointment only and must have a doctor’s recommendation in writing.
Caine was not granted a business license by City Hall for the tidy-looking premises located on the second floor of a commercial building on Fraser Highway. The lower entrance is secured by a coded lock.
Gwilt said the dispensary would continue serving patients, whose diseases include cvancer, AIDS and epilepsy.
“We have clients who need service in a huge way,” Gwilt said. “They are suffering.”
Caine, who was reared in nearby Surrey, said he knows the community “has a heart.”
“I think this will be a defining moment about how this community takes care of its sick,” Caine said.

Mounties Let ‘Honest’ Pot-Smoking Driver Through Checkpoint

Photo: The Wyckoff Journal
​A Canadian man who smoked a joint while an RCMP officer chatted with drivers a few cars ahead of him at a roadside checkpoint last week was allowed to continue on his way after he gave up his small stash of marijuana.
The man, from Yarmouth, Nova Scotia, was upfront when asked if he had “smoked any dope recently,” reports Brian Medel at the Halifax Chronicle-Herald. Yes, he said — about 30 seconds ago.
But at least his seat belt was fastened, and he was courteous and cooperative. Even though the aroma of freshly smoked cannabis wafted up through the air as the officers waved him up, “he seemed fine,” so after he put his small weed stash into the outstretched hand of a Mountie, he was on his way.

However!! Smoking a joint while waiting in line at an RCMP checkpoint isn’t exactly recommended behavior, according to Cpl. Andy Hamilton of the RCMP’s western traffic services.
“I don’t know the exact distance, but it wasn’t very far (back in the line),” Hamilton said.
“I can’t get into the guy’s mind, but he felt comfortable enough to light a joint within eyesight of the police, probably figuring he’d finish it off before he gets there and no one will be the wiser.”
The joint was gone by the time he got to the front of the line, but the Mounties noticed “other evidence.”
“He was honest,” said Hamilton, who wasn’t at the scene but read the report later.
The mellow motorist was briefly detained, but released without being charged, although according to Hamilton, charges are still possible.
The Mounties — who decided the man was OK to drive after questioning him — don’t often charge cases involving only a gram or two of cannabis.
“The main reason we don’t is because whenever we present those cases to the Crown, they usually don’t go forward with them,” Hamilton said.
The fact that a driver was toking up at a checkpoint did not surprise Hamilton. Officers often smell marijuana after pulling a car over, and the driver usually claims he or she smoked a joint “the night before.”
“They’re very nonchalant about it,” Hamilton said.
So if a driver with one or two grams of pot isn’t likely to be charged, is the same likely to be true of a driver with one open bottle of beer?
“You have to go case by case,” Hamilton said.
Susan MacAskill of MADD Canada (Mothers Against Drunk Driving) claimed that marijuana-smoking drivers cause accidents.
“It mellows a person out so they don’t realize they’re a risk,” MacAskill claimed. “They think they’re more relaxed, and we’ve had many people who claim ‘I’m a better drive when I’ve smoked a joint,’ and that’s just absolutely not true.
“:People who are impaired by marijuana can cause as horrific crash,” MacAskill claimed.
“It is really quite bold to be smoking a drug that’s illegal … at a traffic stop,” she said.

Police Confiscate HIV Sufferer’s Medical Marijuana

Photo: The Telegram
Richard Oakley of St. John’s, Newfoundland, holds some of the medications he uses to treat HIV. A package of marijuana sent to him from British Columbia was confiscated by the RCMP.
​A Canadian man had $1,500 worth of medical marijuana confiscated when he went to pick up a package at Purolator and was instead met by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.
Richard Oakley, who tested positive for HIV 25 years ago, moved back to St. John’s, Newfoundland, from British Columbia three months ago to be near his family, reports Barb Sweet at The Telegram.
Oakley said since moving, he already got the first package of marijuana from his designated grower in B.C., with no problem.
But last week, when he kept trying to claim his second delivery of cannabis and medicated chocolate edibles, Purolator told him to come back on Monday. That’s when he was met by at RCMP officer.
Oakley said he was assured there’d be no problem. But then he got a call saying the marijuana was shipped illegally.
“They’re going against my civil rights as a human being,” Oakley said as he sifted through a stack of papers chronicling his diagnosis and access to treatment, including medical cannabis. “They are taking away my quality of life.”
“I don’t want to cause any trouble,” Oakley said. “I just want to live my life.”
Oakley said his understanding was that as long as the package didn’t smell and didn’t advertise its contents, it should have been acceptable.
The medical marijuana eases his nausea from taking a cocktail of HIV medicines, as well as relieving his pain.
He also has neuropathy, which affects the nerves in his feet. The cannabis eases that condition so that he can go for walks and keep his blood flowing.
Since his supply of medical marijuana was confiscated, Oakley said, he hasn’t been able to endure his pills.
“I’m getting sicker by the minute,” said the longtime B.C. AIDS activist, who has a medical marijuana authorization from Health Canada. “I can’t take my medication without throwing up.”
Oakley warned that if the disease takes over, it’s going to cost the Newfoundland government a lot of money to take care of him.
The RCMP is “investigating the matter” involving the confiscation of Oakley’s package, media spokesperson Sgt. Boyd Merrill said on Wednesday.
While the RCMP said it believes Oakley’s medical marijuana license was properly obtained, it is trying to determine if the supplier who sent the package is registered under Health Canada’s guidelines before it considers giving the package to Oakley.
No charges are being considered at this point, according to Merrill.
The courier company doesn’t have access to an approved marijuana grower’s list, and cannot identify whether a package is illegal under Canadian drug laws or legal under medical marijuana regulations, according to Susan Munn, Purolator’s national director of security and loss prevention.
But she said if packages are “suspicious or damaged,” the company is obligated to notify police.
Health Canada has only one company contracted to supply medical marijuana. However, Oakley said he doesn’t deal with that federal supplier, but rather with his designated grower in B.C.

Canadian Province Ordered To Pay For Patients Medical Marijuana Grow

Oh Cannabis

The Nova Scotia government has been ordered to pay the costs associated with medical marijuana growing operations of a woman who said she could not afford to grow and maintain her alloted medicine.

The Income Assistance Appeals Board ruling says that the province’s department of community services must pay $2,500 in start-up costs as well as a $100 quarterly fee for growing supplies of $100.

According to a CBC report, the unidentified couple who live in Amherst have licences from Health Canada to grow up to 25 plants, but they can only afford to grow six and sometimes run low on their supply.

Medical Marijuana

The appeals board said Her need for marijuana was real and that having the government pay for the grow-op equipment was preferable to paying another licensed grower.

The woman’s husband, who also uses medical marijuana, is currently suing community services, the cabinet minister responsible for the department, Denise Peterson-Rafuse, and the appeals board over the same issue.

Community services’ legal department is now weighing its options and said it would not make any statements at this time.

It is not known whether this ruling will affect his decision to proceed with his lawsuit.

Canada Would Rather Pay Legal Costs Instead of Assisting Medical Marijuana Patients

                                                          Image via UPI

According to the Canadian Broadcasting Corperation, a couple Sam & Tanya (who asked that their last names be excluded from a fear of thieves) asked the Nova Scotia Supreme Court if they would have the Maritime Province to provide $2,500 for the couple to be set up and $100 assistance every 3 months to help offset the cost of buying things they need to grow their medication. The licenses they possess from Health Canada permits them to grow no more then 25 plants for their own personal use. When Sam heard from a lawyer that the Department of Community Services has already spent about $200,000 fighting their proposal he had this to say:

That just goes to show you that there’s something wrong with the system when they’re willing to spend that amount of money to stop two disabled people from getting their medication…It’s pathetic and sickening.

Before you disregard this as a couple looking for a quick come-up through a loophole, think about the numbers. If Canada was to agree to the couple’s request and we assume that the couple lives and smokes until they are 90 and are 40 now, the $200,000 Canada could have covered their supply necessities for 98,750 years.

Note that both Sam and Tanya are on income assistance said to have disabilities which aren’t named in the article.

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