It’s time to change how Cornwall Polices Marijuana – Election Blog by Jamie Gilcig
Marijuana is not new to anyone here in Cornwall or for that matter just about anywhere else.
We live in times where bizarre laws are changing and the public is pushing hard for that change.
In Colorado and Washington State Marijuana is now bringing in hard cash into the public purse via taxes rather than bleeding it dry in legal, court, and policing fees.
Here in Canada we have a trade war with US and other producers. For example Marc Emery, the Prince of Pot was sent to spend five years in prison in the US for crimes that he wasn’t charged with in Canada. He runs Cannabis Culture with his wife Jodie. It’s a company that provided employment and paid taxes. Because of what many consider entrapment Mr. Emery has sat for nearly his full term over the sale of seeds to Americans.
In nearby Smiths Falls the former Hershey Chocolate factory has become a facility for Medical Marijuana. Why not have a facility in Cornwall? With our high police budget does it make sense for officers to be charging people with a single joint or small amount of weed in Cornwall?
With many polls indicating that Justin Trudeau may be our next PM, and who has admitted to hitting a fatty, and Toronto Mayor Rob Ford who while more famous for Crack, has also enjoyed the magical herb; I think we need to review the situation and perhaps ask our police force to lay down when it comes to charging casual users or simply ticket them where legally applicable; even if it means creating a by-law.
We need to focus our critical policing dollars on real crime.
We talk about youth retention and we talk about attracting more young people. These are factors in doing this. Marijuana is not so much a criminal or law enforcement issue; it’s an economic one.
I’m hoping that this will be one of the issues that we talk about during this election and I’m hoping that when elected mayor that we can make it a ballot question for 2018 or sooner.