Many have been pushing for this, for years, but opponents say it will only lead to more issues, specifically on the roads.
A report, obtained by the Canadian Press, warns the legalization of marijuana has the potential to lead to a significant increase in the number of drug-impaired driving cases.
That warning to the Federal Justice Minister, Jody Wilson-Raybould, was based on data from both Colorado and Washington. Both states have legalized the recreational use of marijuana, and have seen the number of drug-impaired driving cases “jump dramatically.”
Former Toronto Police Chief and current local MP Bill Blair, the Liberal point man on the legalization issue has acknowledged the possibility exists, but Ottawa is currently studying the issue.
“There could be an increase, and that’s why it’s so important that we do the work right up front, to educate Canadians, and to provide law enforcement and the justice system with the tools they need to control that illegal behavior on our roadways. We have good tools for alcohol. We do not currently have good tools for cannabis so we’re doing the research. We’re doing the work. And we will make the amendments to the law to provide law enforcement with the ability to keep our roadways safe.”
The Trudeau government is expected to introduce a bill to legalize marijuana use in the spring of 2017.
Meantime, The Government of Canada has announced it will make a marijuana-related announcement at 2:00 p.m. Thursday, with further details coming specifically from Health Canada.