Cannabis in Canada was in attendance outside the Toronto Police Headquarters where advocates denounced the city’s raid of over 40 dispensaries and 90 arrests.

“We suffered the most devastating day our culture has ever experienced in Canada,” said long-time activist Marc Emery. “We’ve had prohibition for pretty well 50 years, and we’ve had Stephen Harper, and we’ve had haters, but nothing has ever happened as bad as yesterday.”

Advocate Erin Maloughney said the raids will ultimately hurt medical patients who depend on the dispensaries.

“they don’t want to be on medications, or as many medications, as they are previous, they understand that cannabis can help them with some of their ailments and they want to have the choice. so where do they go now?” said Maloughney.

Maloughney said the options left to patients, which include going through the government licensed producer system, doesn’t offer the same benefits and resources that face-to-face dispensaries can provide.

Imre Kovacs from Alair Vaporizers agreed, and said it’s pressure from the licensed producers that initiated the raids.

“The reason that it’s happening is because the LP, mail-order business model, has failed,” said Kovacs. “People are choosing, they’re voting with their feet, they’re voting with their cash and saying that’s not the way I want to access my cannabis — they’re choosing to access dispensaries.”