Government will not appeal ruling on home-grown pot for patients

The federal government will not appeal a Federal Court decision which struck down a ban on medicinal marijuana patients growing their own pot, Health Minister Jane Philpott said Thursday.

OTTAWA — The federal government will not appeal a Federal Court decision which struck down a ban on medicinal marijuana patients growing their own pot, Health Minister Jane Philpott said Thursday.

Speaking outside the Commons, Philpott said the government respects the February decision.

The ruling followed a constitutional challenge from four B.C. residents against a law passed by the Harper government, which they argued violated their charter rights.

In his decision to strike down the ban, Judge Michael Phelan suspended the ruling for six months to allow Ottawa to rewrite the law.

Philpott said Thursday the government will move to address medicinal marijuana regulations in response to the concerns of the court.

It intends to have completed this process by August — the time frame laid out in the judgment.

“At this point, I am not going to speculate as to what kind of regulations will be put in place or how the current regulations will be amended, but certainly we will take into respect every recommendation of the court decision,” Philpott said.

The government will ensure that those who require marijuana for medical purposes have appropriate access, she added.

“Until such time as the amendments are put in place, the marijuana for medical purposes regulations will remain in effect,” she said.

“If people have an injunction that allows them to be able to grow for medical purposes, then those with an injunction will continue to be able to use that. Otherwise the licensed producers are the only organizations that are allowed to produce medical marijuana under these regulations.”

Health Canada’s medicinal marijuana regulations were first introduced in 2013 and required patients to buy cannabis from licensed producers instead of growing their own.

The Liberal government has also committed to regulating and legalizing recreational marijuana, though it has yet to proceed with the establishment of a federal-provincial-territorial task force to consult experts on how to proceed.

Bill Blair, the Liberal MP and former Toronto police chief who was tapped by the Trudeau government as its pot frontman, has stressed Criminal Code provisions on marijuana must be enforced as the government considers a legalized regime.

In February, members of the police community said the discussion surrounding legalization had created confusion, particularly for front line cops.

Blair, parliamentary secretary to the justice minister, stressed at an open Senate Liberal caucus meeting that the laws remain on the books.

“The laws that currently exist, exist in this country and we are a … nation of laws,” he said.

“Quite frankly, until those laws are repealed by Parliament through the appropriate processes, they should be upheld, they should be obeyed.”

Just Posted

RCMP investigate suspicious package in downtown Red Deer

Part of downtown Red Deer was closed to traffic due to a… Continue reading

Ottawa’s apathy on rural crime ‘outrageous,’ say central Alberta MPs

Recent parliamentary committee report on rural crime inadequate say MPs

The future’s exciting, but also a bit scary, for Red Deer’s high school grads

Concerns about job prospects, high cost of education expressed

Blind calf finds friendship in dog in central Alberta

Heaven and Sweetpea are best buddies. Heaven, a calf who was born… Continue reading

Walk raises awareness of victims of domestic violence

Central Alberta men and boys will walk a mile in high heels… Continue reading

Dogs and drugs don’t mix: Red Deer business wants to leave downtown after 18 years

One business owner is done with downtown Red Deer after 18 years.… Continue reading

Cast your votes for the Best of Red Deer

Nominations for the Best of Red Deer Readers’ Choice Awards are officially… Continue reading

Seniors: The unheard melodies

The sights and sounds around us enable us to experience our world.… Continue reading

Police find urn with ashes along bank of Red Deer River

RCMP find urn with ashes along bank of Red Deer River Red… Continue reading

North Vancouver RCMP seek skier whose pole caused brain injury to B.C. teen

VANCOUVER — A North Vancouver family is joining with RCMP to urge… Continue reading

Canadian ‘Aladdin’ star eyes diverse career championing homegrown talent

TORONTO — Canadian “Aladdin” star Mena Massoud says his wild carpet ride… Continue reading

Supreme Court will tuck into UberEats case about drivers’ benefit rights

OTTAWA — The Supreme Court of Canada will help decide whether a… Continue reading

Speech from the throne: Read the entire text outlining UCP priorities

The following is the speech from the throne, read Wednesday in the… Continue reading

Canada’s Rebecca Marino drops second-round French Open qualifying match

PARIS — Canada’s Rebecca Marino fell just short in a second-round qualifying… Continue reading

Most Read