Health Minister Says Legalization Task Force Announced Soon

Federal health minister Jane Philpott said the government’s legalization task force, the group tasked with creating recommendations for the regulation of recreational cannabis, will soon be revealed.

“We’ve had some great recommendations and we’re just kind of trying to get some confirmations from people,” Philpott said. “It’s going to be a great group.”

The task force will draft a report to Parliament before any bills are tabled by the Liberal party in preparation for the announced spring, 2017 timeline for legalization.

Philpott said the group will consider issues such as who can receive a license to produce cannabis, where it will be sold and public education.

While Philpott said she wasn’t ruling out representation from the cannabis community on the task force, she expected the majority of members to be experts in health care, addiction care, public safety and justice.

Cannabis activist Jodie Emery sent a letter to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and other cabinet members requesting to serve on the task force.

“The government would never draft legislation on farming, immigration or gay rights without consulting experts in those fields,” Emery said.

Philpott more details about the government’s proposed timeline for legalization will be revealed when the task force is announced.