Ottawa conducts review of impact of cannabis law | Cannabis: the effects of legalization
Federal Health Minister Jean-Yves Duclos and his Mental Health colleague Carolyn Bennett announced a review of the Cannabis Act and its effects on public health and young Canadians.
< p class="e-p">The federal government launched a review of its law that legalized cannabis on Thursday, almost a year late.
In October 2018, the Liberals lifted a century-long ban on the recreational use and sale of marijuana, anticipating they would review the law three years after it took effect. p>
In all honesty, we would have liked to launch the [revision] last spring, but we preferred to take a little more time to do things correctly, offered as an explanation the Minister of Health, Jean-Yves Duclos, after announcing the beginning of the exercise.
He argued that the review would be better done since its scope will be broader than expected and the additional time allowed for consolidating a solid panel of independent experts to lead the way.
The Cannabis Act states that the federal government must investigate the implications of legalization for public health, use among youth and Indigenous people and their communities, but Justin Trudeau's government has effectively included other aspects , such as economic impact in addition to measuring effectiveness in countering substance-related criminal activity.
Already, Minister Duclos has spoken of significant progress made on several fronts since 2018. He affirmed that data from Statistics Canada show that the supply of the population from legal sources of cannabis has increased steadily to to 69% in the second quarter of 2022.
Alongside her, Minister of Mental Health, Carolyn Bennett, argued that the data points to greater awareness among young people of the effects harmful effects of marijuana.
I believe we have done well in terms of public education campaign, but since the advent of edibles, we need to do more, she added.
The expert panel that will conduct the review will be chaired by Morris Rosenberg, a former Deputy Minister of Health and Foreign Affairs, who served as President and CEO of the Trudeau Foundation from 2014 to 2018, according to the organization's website.
Four more members are to be named to the panel, and Mr. Duclos said the announcement would come soon.
“I believe that periodic legislative reviews are an important instrument of public policy in general as the context in which this law was passed at any given time continues to evolve.
— Morris Rosenberg, chair of the panel that will review the Cannabis Act
As of Thursday, all Canadians interested in providing their views were invited to do so online. The panel of experts, before issuing its recommendations to the government, will also consult the provinces and territories, as well as Indigenous communities and representatives of the cannabis industry.
< p class="e-p">Ministers Duclos and Bennett must present a report to the House of Commons and the Senate within 18 months of the launch of the review.