FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – We are now less than ten days removed from the August 24th effective date for new rules for patients wanting to grow their own pot.
Following the Federal Court ruling that quashed the ban on growing medical marijuana at home, Health Canada has issued Access to Cannabis for Medical Purposes Regulations, which will replace Marijuana for Medical Purposes Regulations allowing people who’ve been authorized by their doctor to use medicinal cannabis, to grow a limited amount of marijuana for their personal use.
The new regulations are a further response to the Federal Court decision earlier this year that found the ban on patients growing medical marijuana, to be a violation of their constitutional rights.
They allow patients to grow two plants outdoors, or five indoors, but no more than one gram a day, and while patients with mobility issues can also designate someone else, registered with Health Canada, to grow it for them, BC Deputy Health Minister Jacqueline Bogden says, there are restrictions.
Health Canada has also reaffirmed patients will only be able to get supplies, like seeds and plants, from 34 licensed suppliers, and that the “dispensaries” are still not authorized to sell cannabis for medical or any other purposes.
The deputy minister side-stepped questions on whether illegal dispensaries could be allowed to operate under new federal laws to be introduced next spring.
Meantime the Executive Director of the Cannabis Growers of Canada, Ian Dawkins, says while he’s not surprised by the dispensary decision, the current number of suppliers cannot meet the demand of the tens of thousands of medical marijuana patients across the country, and he’s concerned the dispensaries still won’t be legal, even after the federal government brings in its new legislation.