Canadian medical marijuana patients can grow their own cannabis or get someone to grow it for them under new, expanded rules that come into effect later this month, Health Canada announced Thursday. They can also designate someone else to grow it for them, for instance if they’re not healthy enough to grow their own, granted the other person passes a background check showing they haven’t been convicted of a drug offence in the last 10 years and aren’t growing for more than two people, themselves included. The third option is getting it from one of 34 Health Canada-approved producers – the only legal source under the current laws. Someone prescribed a gram a day could grow two plants outdoors or five plants indoors to be able to supply themselves, Health Canada said, since plants grown outdoors yield more supply than indoor plants. The seeds and plants would come from these licensed producers, who could sell an interim supply of cannabis to people as they wait for their homegrown supply to be ready.
The new rules come into effect on Aug. 24. A Federal Court judge earlier this year struck down the former Conservative government’s 2013 law requiring medical marijuana patients to get their cannabis from licensed producers instead of growing their own. He gave the federal government six months to come up with new rules. Phelan also ruled that around 28,000 patients who had been allowed to keep growing their own medical marijuana under a 2014 injunction could continue until these new rules are in place. Health Canada said Thursday the injunction won’t be lifted until it is confident it can handle these thousands of patients coming into the new regulatory system.
The ruling came after a court challenge from four B.C. residents who argued the law was unconstitutional and took away affordable access to medicine.
Marijuana among major articles on agenda
TYNGSBORO – A citizens petition to prohibit marijuana establishments from coming to Tyngsboro is one of several major articles that will be voted on at Town Meeting on Tuesday. Town Meeting will begin at 7 p.m. at Tyngsboro Elementary School, 205 Westford Road. The petition led by lifelong resident Ann Tinnirella – Article 28 – has received over 120 signatures, according to documents obtained by The Sun. Tinnirella described marijuana as a gateway drug and said she thinks it sends the wrong message to allow retail marijuana businesses to come into Tyngsboro.
Selectman Ron Keohane is in favor of the retail marijuana establishments. Keohane has said that he would like to see those funds used to fix up the town’s roads, which he said is currently Tyngsboro’s biggest issue. The selectman stressed that opioids are the health crisis of this generation – not marijuana. If the petition passes at Town Meeting, it would also have to go on a town-wide ballot vote to be accepted by the voters, according to Town Administrator Matt Hanson. N Article 26, which looks to establish location requirements for licensed marijuana establishments.
No marijuana establishments would be allowed within 500 feet of any pre-existing public or private school, licensed daycare center, church, library, playground, or indoor and outdoor active recreation area for children. N Article 27 looks to impose a 3 percent excise tax on the total gross sales for recreational marijuana. Hanson said that could mean hundreds of thousands of dollars in annual tax revenue for the town, and the funds could be used at Town Meeting’s discretion. The project was turned down by Town Meeting last year due to costs considered high for local business owners.
Studies link legal marijuana with fewer opioid prescriptions ⋆ The Emerald Report
Pot can relieve chronic pain in adults, so advocates for liberalizing marijuana laws have proposed it as a lower-risk alternative to opioids. Some research suggests marijuana may encourage opioid use, and so might make the epidemic worse. The new studies don’t directly assess the effect of legalizing marijuana on opioid addiction and overdose deaths. Over-prescribing is considered a key factor in the opioid epidemic. One looked at trends in opioid prescribing under Medicaid, which covers low-income adults, between 2011 and 2016.
It compared the states where marijuana laws took effect versus states without such laws. Results showed that laws that let people use marijuana to treat specific medical conditions were associated with about a 6 percent lower rate of opioid prescribing for pain. That suggest the medical marijuana laws didn’t reach some people who could benefit from using marijuana instead of opioids, said Hefei Wen of the University of Kentucky in Lexington, one of the study authors. Researchers found that Medicare patients in states with marijuana dispensaries filled prescriptions for about 14 percent fewer daily doses of opioids than those in other states. W.
David Bradford, an economist at the University of Georgia in Athens who’s an author of the second study, said the results add to other findings that suggest to experts that marijuana is a viable alternative to opioids. For one thing, they don’t reveal whether individual patients actually reduced or avoided using opioids because of the increased access to marijuana. They called for states and the federal government to pay for more studies to clarify the effect of marijuana use on opioid use, saying such research is needed for science to guide policy-making.