Canada’s health minister Jane Philpott has begun the work of strategizing how best to legalize marijuana in the country.
According to CBC News, “Philpott said the government will create a task force to consult with legal authorities, public safety officials and Health Canada scientists, who already have a role in regulating products with health risks such as tobacco.”
Not only has Philpott helped initiate the creation of the task force that will hopefully lead to full-scale marijuana legalization, but she’s also started doing the scientific work that would support such a move.
She told the news source that “Scientists in her department have already started to brief her on the topic.”
Philpott’s recent moves to initiate the process of cannabis legalization come in response to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s call to begin reforming drug laws.
Earlier this month, Trudeau issued an official mandate calling on public officials to start the process of legalization.
In the document, he urged lawmakers to “[work] with the Ministers of Public Safety, and Emergency Preparedness and Health [to] create a federal-provincial-territorial process that will lead to the legalization and regulation of marijuana.”
Philpott, it seems, is already responding to Trudeau’s call.
In so doing, she’s well aware of the pioneering work she and other Canadian lawmakers are pursuing.
“The world is going to be looking to Canada to make sure we do the job well,” she told reporters.
She also added that “the government will look abroad for best practices, but [that] she doesn’t see a perfect model anywhere.”
Now that the move toward legalization has been officially started, many Canadians are beginning to seriously consider details such as where exactly pot will be sold.
In particular, a group of convenience store owners has petitioned for the right to sell pot in corner stores. So far, however, that doesn’t seem likely as key leaders like Trudeau himself have voiced concerns with this options.
Whatever happens, though, Philpott seems just as committed as Trudeau to the idea of legalizing marijuana.
“We need to be cautious about it, but I think most thoughtful Canadians recognize that the current system [of prohibition] isn’t working and they’re looking to us to make sure we make a wise decision,” she said.
Hopefully, as more politicians and global leaders start taking marijuana legalization more seriously, it will persuade other countries to follow suit.
OK, United States, Mexico, and Canada have made their moves to legalize, now it’s your turn!