Manitoba looking for your input on cannabis legalization

The Government of Manitoba is asking for the public’s input on its cannabis file with a survey called Manitobans Making Choices that can be filled out here.

Ontario similarly had a public consultation before unveiling their plans for cannabis ‘legalization’ in early September, and only time will tell what stance Manitoba will take once it has gone through the results.

What are they going to do with the survey results?

According to Manitoba’s liquor and gaming authority, the survey is intended to help shape a “regulatory framework for cannabis that meets public expectations for safety and consumer protection”, as reported by the CBC

Will Manitoba take a measured, common sense approach that allows for a craft cannabis industry and entrepreneurship or will it follow in the footsteps of Ontario or New Brunswick’s monopoly of licensed producers and Crown Corporation? Considering the class action lawsuits being faced by licensed producers such as Mettrum and the ironically named Organigram for using banned pesticides in their products, the system being proposed by these governments is far from perfect.

How are the provinces responding to legalization?

As all the provinces start looking towards how they’ll be regulating cannabis, it’s a time of great uncertainty for the industry. The federal government has issued a list of guidelines but have left the majority of the big decisions up to the provinces themselves, which opens up the very real possibility of inconsistent cannabis laws across the country.

We encourage all Manitoba residents to go to the website and get their voices heard and hopefully, maybe the government will listen to the cannabis community and give real cannabis legalization a chance.

In other Manitoba news…

In other Manitoba news, back on September 8th, National Access Cannabis, a chain of Canada-wide medicinal cannabis dispensaries, went public and the largest shareholders were the Manitoba-based Opaskwayak First Nations, holding about 10% of total shares, according to CBC.

This signals a growing trend as First Nations across Canada become interested in the cannabis industry and explore the possibility of cultivating it on their lands, with the hopes that it will not only generate revenue, but provide an important opportunity for reconciliation between Aboriginals and Canada.