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Summary of C-45, the Bill That Legalized Cannabis in Canada

Here is the summary of Bill C-45, the legislation passed by Canada’s Parliament on June 19 that legalizes marijuana:

«This enactment enacts the Cannabis Act to provide legal access to cannabis and to control and regulate its production, distribution and sale.

«The objectives of the Act are to prevent young persons from accessing cannabis, to protect public health and public safety by establishing strict product safety and product quality requirements and to deter criminal activity by imposing serious criminal penalties for those operating outside the legal framework. The Act is also intended to reduce the burden on the criminal justice system in relation to cannabis.»

The Act

«(a) establishes criminal prohibitions such as the unlawful sale or distribution of cannabis, including its sale or distribution to young persons, and the unlawful possession, production, importation and exportation of cannabis;

«(b) enables the Minister to authorize the possession, production, distribution, sale, importation and exportation of cannabis, as well as to suspend, amend or revoke those authorizations when warranted;

«(c) authorizes persons to possess, sell or distribute cannabis if they are authorized to sell cannabis under a provincial Act that contains certain legislative measures;

«(d) prohibits any promotion, packaging and labelling of cannabis that could be appealing to young persons or encourage its consumption, while allowing consumers to have access to information with which they can make informed decisions about the consumption of cannabis;

«(e) provides for inspection powers, the authority to impose administrative monetary penalties and the ability to commence proceedings for certain offenses by means of a ticket;

«(f) includes mechanisms to deal with seized cannabis and other property;

«(g) authorizes the Minister to make orders in relation to matters such as product recalls, the provision of information, the conduct of tests or studies and the taking of measures to prevent non-compliance with the Act;

«(h) permits the establishment of a cannabis tracking system for the purposes of the enforcement and administration of the Act;

«(i) authorizes the Minister to fix, by order, fees related to the administration of the Act; and

«(j) authorizes the Governor in Council to make regulations respecting such matters as quality, testing, composition, packaging and labelling of cannabis, security clearances and the collection and disclosure of information in respect of cannabis as well as to make regulations exempting certain persons or classes of cannabis from the application of the Act.

«This enactment also amends the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act to, among other things, increase the maximum penalties for certain offenses and to authorize the Minister to engage persons having technical or specialized knowledge to provide advice. It repeals item 1 of Schedule II and makes consequential amendments to that Act as the result of that repeal.

«In addition, it repeals Part XII.‍1 of the Criminal Code, which deals with instruments and literature for illicit drug use, and makes consequential amendments to that Act.

«It amends the Non-smokers’ Health Act to prohibit the smoking and vaping of cannabis in federally regulated places and conveyances.

«Finally, it makes consequential amendments to other Acts.»

Read the entire Act here.

Re: Home Cultivation

Under Criminal Activities/Possession, Section (e) reads:

«Unless authorized under this Act, it is prohibited for an individual to possess more than four cannabis plants that are not budding or flowering.»

In other words, Canadians can grow up to four plants at one time at a residence or other location.

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