Proposal from police signals shift toward cannabis reform, says SFU professor
A recommendation to let police treat simple marijuana possession as a ticketing offence is being opposed by the head of a provincial campaign to decriminalize pot.
Dana Larsen, whose group Sensible BC is set to kick off a petition campaign next month to force a referendum on marijuana policy, says the new resolution from the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police is counter-productive.
The chiefs’ association argues the option of writing tickets to punish people caught with less than 30 grams of marijuana would be less costly and time-intensive than sending criminal charges through the courts.
“It’s a bad idea,” Larsen said. “It’s actually going to result in more cannabis users being persecuted.”
He said police in B.C. issue warnings or write reports on 18,000 people a year for use of marijuana without laying charges.
“They would all get tickets under that new system,” Larsen predicted.
He said the proposal could confuse B.C. voters as canvassers prepare to ask them to sign a petition that would press for a referendum on a proposed law blocking u. . . . . READ MORE