Canada Moves To Legalize Recreational Marijuana

On April 13, the Canadian federal government finally announced its much anticipated bill to legalize recreational use of cannabis by July 2018.

The proposal, which the party hopes to make law by July of 2018, sets a minimum purchase age of 18, which is one year below the legal drinking age in most Canadian provinces and three years below the minimum age set in USA states that have legalized recreational weed.

Individuals would be allowed to carry up to 30 grams of recreational pot, similar to the one-ounce standard set in several US states with legal marijuana laws in effect, while households would be allowed to grow up to four plants.

On Thursday, the Canadian government under Prime Minister Justin Trudeau unveiled its plans to legalize recreational marijuana.

Legalizing marijuana was a centerpiece of Trudeau's campaign, one that helped make him especially popular among young voters, according to CBC News.

The stated aim of legalization is to reduce policing and prosecutions, and keep marijuana out of the hands of children.

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"It is important that Canadians are aware of possible actions they may face upon attempted entrance into the United States if they possess or have residue of marijuana".

While medical marijuana is already legal in Canada, consulting firm Deloitte has estimated annual sales of recreational marijuana could be as high as $6.5 billion.

The proposed legislation would create new criminal offences with maximum penalties of 14 years in jail to anyone who sells or gives cannabis to youth.

Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould, Health Minister Jane Philpott and Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale will be among those at a news conference at 12 pm (EST) to talk about one of the most anticipated packages of legislation in recent memory. It said three provinces - Ontario included - should be allowed to set the legal marijuana consumption age higher to match their minimum drinking age of 19. The New Democrats have called for its immediate legalization in order to end drug prosecutions they say are causing undue harm and wasting police resources.

"The current system of prohibition is failing our kids", said Liberal MP Bill Blair, a former Toronto police chief and the government's point man on the legalized-marijuana file.

- Sales to be restricted to people age 18 and older, although provinces would have the jurisdiction to increase their own minimum age.

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Only cannabis grown by a federally licensed producer will be available for sale, though Canadians could grow up to four plants at home.

"Our system will actually be better", he said.

A senior federal official told The Globe and Mail that the government has taken the opportunity to clean up all provisions in the Criminal Code dealing with impaired driving to remove a number of loopholes.

· They are moving to test more of their product to empower clients to make informed choices.

'The only control that is now in place is the criminal sanction and the laws, ' he said, according to CBC News.

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