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Policies around Cannabis Legalization

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Starting October 17, 2018, the Canadian Federal Government will legalize and regulate the sale of cannabis in Canada. 

The Medicine Hat Catholic Board of Education encourages healthy lifestyles and is committed to a smoke-free environment for staff, students and visitors. This includes the creation of a tobacco and smoking materials free environment, prevention education, and provisions for counselling and support for staff and students. 

Administrative Procedure 165 - Smoke-Free environment: 

"Tobacco Products and Smoking Materials is defined to include any tobacco product or tobaccos-like product, which includes, but is not limited to, spit tobacco, cigarettes, e-cigarettes/vaporizers (vaping), cigars, marijuana/cannabis, hookahs. 

The use, sale, and promotion of tobacco products and smoking materials is prohibited in all District owned and operated facilities and on all District properties. 

Students possessing, selling, promoting or using tobaccos products and smoking materials in District owned and operated facilities will be subject to the student discipline policies of the school."

The federal legislation will:

  • allow adults to possess up to 30 grams of legally-produced cannabis
  • allow adults to grow up to four cannabis plants per household
  • set the minimum age for purchase and use at 18 years of age, with the option for provinces to increase the age limit
  • enable a regulatory regime for the licensed production of cannabis, which would be controlled by the federal government
  • enable a regulatory regime for the distribution and sale of cannabis, which would be controlled by the provincial government
  • establish new provisions to address drug-impaired driving, as well as making several changes to the overall legal framework to address alcohol-impaired driving

Protecting youth

The Cannabis Act has several measures that help prevent youth from accessing cannabis. These include both age restrictions and restricting the promotion of cannabis.

Age restrictions

No person may sell or provide cannabis to any person under the age of 18. The Act creates 2 new criminal offences, with maximum penalties of 14 years in jail, for:

  • giving or selling cannabis to youth
  • using a youth to commit a cannabis-related offence

Restricting promotion and enticement

Similar to the current restrictions on advertising for tobacco products, the Cannabis Act helps discourage youth cannabis use by prohibiting:

  • products that are appealing to youth
  • packaging or labeling cannabis in a way that makes it appealing to youth
  • selling cannabis through self-service displays or vending machines
  • promoting cannabis, except in narrow circumstances where young people could not see the promotion

Penalties for violating these prohibitions include a fine of up to $5 million or 3 years in jail.

Resources

Government of Canada Cannabis Legalization and Regulation

Alberta Provincial Government Cannabis legalization in Alberta

Alberta Cannabis Framework

Clarity on Cannabis: FAQ for Educators: English and French
Clarity on Cannabis: Recommended Resources for Schools: English and French
Clarity on Cannabis: What Alberta Parents and Caregivers Need to Know English and French