Health Minister Rona Ambrose responds to Vancouver city council regulating marijuana dispensaries

The office of Canadian Health Minister Rona Ambrose released the following statement on June 24 in response to the City of Vancouver passing a council motion that provides for the regulation of stores selling medicinal marijuana:

As Health Minister, I am deeply disappointed by the City of Vancouver’s decision to 'regulate' illegal marijuana storefronts across the city.

Marijuana is neither an approved drug nor medicine in Canada and Health Canada does not endorse its use. While Canadian courts have required the Government to allow access to marijuana when authorized by a physician, the law is clear that this must be done in a controlled fashion to protect public health and safety.

The evidence is clear that when youth smoke marijuana they have increased risks of mental health issues including psychosis and schizophrenia. The City’s own medical officials predict that dispensaries will make marijuana cookies and candies more accessible to...

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