Currently, Canadians have to successfully make their way through the Ministry of Health bureaucracy to be permitted to legally grow or consume marijuana for medical use. The new proposal by the federal government will change this by making Canadians obtain a prescription-like document from their doctors. However, this prescription will consist of a list of products made by pharmaceutical companies acting as authorized vendors. Which companies get the state-granted contracts will most likely be determined by lobbying.
“Under our new rule, only facilities that meet strict security requirements will be able to produce marijuana for medical purposes,” Health Minister Leona Aglukkaq told a press conference in Maple Ridge. Aglukkaq parroted the Party line by claiming marijuana use to be a "public" health concern and that, “the high value of marijuana on the illicit market increases the risk of home invasions.” Of course, she didn't mention that these home invasions are conducted by the state itself.
Currently, patients apply to the Health Canada bureaucracy through the Marijuana Medical Access Program. If accepted, they are allowed to either grow pot on their property or purchase it from a government-approved producer. Under the new program, Aglukkaq said Canadians would be able to "choose their favourite provider based on strain, price, quality and customer service." Doublespeak for, "the state is taking away your home-grown option and forcing one of the Big Pharma producers on you."
Aglukkaq continued saying that the price of maintaining the current program, at $15 million per year, has become unsustainable for taxpayers. The idea of complete legalization and an end to all subsidies doesn't seem to be an option on the table.
CTV: The Ministry of Health said it intends to fully implement the system by March 13, 2014, at which point all current licenses to possess or produce pot would expire. The government is holding a 75-day comment period for the public to give feedback on the proposal, which will end on February 28 next year. The details of the new regulations are available on the ministry’s website. The government is holding a 75-day comment period for the public to give feedback on the proposal, which will end on February 28 next year. The details of the new regulations are available on the ministry’s website.