Canada announces plans to legalize marijuana by July 2018

Bill Blair, the Canadian government’s point man on legalizing marijuana, speaks during a news conference Thursday in Ottawa. (Chris Wattie/Reuters)

OTTAWA — The Canadian government has introduced sweeping legislation designed to permit the recreational use of marijuana throughout the country by July 2018, fulfilling an election promise by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

The bill, inspired in part by the experiences of cannabis regimes in Colorado and Washington state, goes well beyond the U.S. situation, where marijuana remains prohibited at the federal level. In Canada, the federal government will change criminal law nationally and will license growers and set product standards while leaving it up to the provinces to handle distribution and manage retail sale.

Canada will become the first large industrialized nation with a broad system permitting recreational as well as medical use of marijuana. At present, only Uruguay has a national legal regime permitting widespread use of cannabis. To continue reading: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/worldviews/wp/2017/04/13/canada-announces-plans-to-legalize-marijuana-by-july-2018/?utm_term=.a8bae8486e00