Human Rights Violation Filed as a Result of Saskatoon Dispensary Raid

The Saskatchewan Human Rights Commission is now involved in the police raid of a Saskatoon Compassion Club after a member filed a complaint with the group, with more expected to come from other members.

At a demonstration outside police headquarters on Nov. 7, Kelly Anderson said the police closure of the dispensary discriminated against him by denying him access to medicine.

The Saskatchewan Human Rights Code protects those with disabilities or medical conditions from discrimination.

Anderson said the compassion club was the only place he felt safe purchasing cannabis to treat his chronic pain

“It’s cruel. It’s denying people medicine that need it,” he said. “This is not about recreational marijuana, this is about access to medicine.”

The complaint names Saskatoon mayor Don Atchison and police chief Clive Weighill.

Weighill and the police service have defended their raid against the operation, which they say was an illegal operation that violated local laws and that patients like Anderson can access cannabis through legal channels.

“People who have prescriptions for medicinal marihuana can receive their marihuana through several legally licensed producers and dispensers,” a statement from police read. “They are not left without a supplier.”

Anderson said he is afraid going through licensed producers will make him lose his own growing licence.

The complaint has also inspired others affected by the raid to file similar complaints.

The compassion club’s official Facebook group said, since the story broke of Anderson’s action with the commission, the club has had inquiries from other members.

“I have spoken with Human Rights this morning and will be placing a class-action human rights complaint on multiple members’ behalves,” read a statement from operator Mark Hauk, who was arrested and charged with possession and trafficking of marijuana as a result of the raid.

Hauk encouraged members who wished to be included in the complaint to message him with their information.