Kudos to the UBCM for rejecting Surrey’s privacy-invading and unnecessary request that Health Canada provide them with lists of licensed medical cannabis users. Surrey, long a leader in cannabis hysteria, has no business snooping into the private health data of its residents. And its justification for that invasion doesn’t pass muster.
How on earth does having a list of legal medicinal growers help a city chase out illegal growers? It makes no sense at all.
Police already can call Health Canada 24 hours a day to check on whether someone has a license. That is all that is needed and all that should be allowed.
Do cities need to know who in the neighborhood starts tomatoes indoors in the spring?
Because growing any plant indoors uses exactly the same system as cannabis. Check out the latest copy of Urban Garden magazine and you will see systems far more intensive than the average medicinal cannabis grower.
The so-called risks of cannabis production are, in any event, vastly overblown. I represent dozens of licensed growers and none of them would put themselves and their families at risk by growing unsafely. In my experience, cities like Surrey use the excuse of fire and building codes to harass legal growers out of a general bias against them, not out of any real safety concern.
The bottom line is that if Surrey wants to get rid of cannabis growing in homes it needs to call upon the federal government to end cannabis prohibition and, instead, enact sensible regulations so that our farmers can legally produce this unique medicinal plant.
Kirk Tousaw, J.D., LL.M.
Executive Director, Beyond Prohibition Foundation