Pot in Canada

I’ve been recently informed that in the great white north, the wonder-weed is legal. Now, ignoring the fact that I’ve been living under a rock, I must wonder:
Has it always been legal, or did it get legalized recently?
If the latter is the case, how did it get done–what tactics were used, and how long did it take?

Maybe there IS hope for us down here in the “land of the free”

Pot is not legal in Canada. Yet.

What you are referring to is the recent ruling by the Supreme Court in the case of a chronically ill man who was using pot to alleviate his symptoms. The court ruled that the gov’t must rewrite its laws on pot or have them fall into abeyance.

Please note too that the single-issue Marijuana Party got a respectable 0.5% (no sarcasm) of the vote in the last federal election.

damn, well I guess I’ll have to find somewhere else to go on vacation–on the plus side I haven’t been living under a rock after all.
Thanks for the speedy reply, matt_mcl

Now our northerly neighbors will not
meet their dealers in some vacant lot.
Purely medicin-
al every citizen’
ll have unfettered access to pot.

pot has been decriminalized(not legalised, which confuses people) in Colorado and about 10 other states since 1985. Which means it is a civil, not criminal penalty.

Interesting note, in Boulder, smoking Tabacco in a public building has been criminalized, so if you walk into the Boulder police station smoking a joint(less than an ounce) the max penalty is $100, if you light up a Camel in the police station you can be fined $1200

As matt notes, marijuana is still an illegal substance in Canada.

Cannabis and its derivatives are prescribed substances under Schedule II of the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act, S.C. 1996, c. 19. It is an offence to posses it (s. 4), traffick in it (s. 5), import/export it (s. 6), or produce it (s. 7).

However, last July the Ontario Court of Appeal (not the Supreme Court) has held that the failure to include an exception for medical use infringes the Charter’s guarantee of security of the person: R. v. Parker. I believe that case is on appeal to the Supreme Court, but I’m not sure.

That Ontario court decision has triggered an ongoing debate on the medicinal use of marijuana: Hopes for marijuana ignite controversy for widespread use, and a couple of months ago, the federal government issued a contract to a company to grow marijuana in a disused mine in Manitoba, so there would be consistent supply for medicinal exceptions and medical research (can’t find a link to that - sorry).

Also as matt mentioned, at the federal level, there is the Marijuana Party of Canada, which advocates the de-criminalization of marijuana.

See also: Canada’s Marijuana Party.