CanadaEnforcementMedical and PharmaceuticalRegulationsPasha Brands supports petition to review medical access to cannabis

Canada's earliest dispensaries and their patients should be exempt from the Cannabis Act, they say
Avatar Nick LabaNovember 19, 20195 min

Members of British Colombia’s cannabis community are petitioning the federal government for a full review of the current state of access to medical weed.

Pasha Brands Ltd (CSE: CRFT) issued a press release Monday outlining its support of the petition in the wake of recent raids on some of the nation’s oldest compassion clubs and dispensaries.

The Victoria Cannabis Buyers’ Club, which has been in operation since 1996 and has over 7,700 patients, had its storefront raided last Thursday by B.C.’s community safety unit and Victoria police.

The release states that the legal market is clearly failing to meet the needs of the same cannabis patients who are being left behind by the medical access program. And amidst controversial calls for more enforcement from the Canadian Cannabis Council — a group representing most major pot players including Aurora Cannabis Inc. (TSX: ACB) (NYSE: ACB), Aphria Inc. (TSE:APHA) and Canopy Growth Corporation (TSX: WEED) (NYSE: CGC) — Pasha says it wants the opposite.

The craft cannabis branding house is asking for the feds to exempt Canada’s earliest medical dispensaries, its patients and its producers from the Cannabis Act.

Spokesperson Jamie Shaw said that while Pasha sent out the press release, the petition is something they are undertaking as citizens.

“It’s not a company initiative; it just fits with our values,” she said.

“Federally [the compassion club model] is something that courts have been telling successive governments to look to for advice and that they should be supporting this model, and that still hasn’t happened,” Shaw said.

The petition highlights key court cases that have led to medical access to cannabis regulations as not being adequately addressed by the current system. Cases such as Allard v. Canada, which established precedents for obtaining medical cannabis.

In Canada, the right to grow and possess cannabis for personal medical consumption is a right under Section 7 of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms — the right to life, liberty and security of the person.

“The 2002 Report of the Senate Special Committee on Illegal Drugs found that medical dispensary practices were in line with therapeutic indications, and that moving forward, Health Canada should work with compassion clubs, rather than against them,” the press release reads. “By the Senate’s own recommendations, these outlets should be part of Canada’s existing medical cannabis framework.”

The petition has been sent to the House of Commons and is currently waiting for support from a member of Parliament, which is necessary for it to be presented to the House. Shaw said she’s confident they will get that support.

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