Canadian Police Chiefs propose ticket System for Pot

Aug 21, 2013

Canada’s police chiefs have voted over­whelm­ingly in favour of reform­ing drug laws in the coun­try. The Cana­dian Asso­ci­a­tion of Chiefs of Police, meet­ing in Win­nipeg this week, wants offi­cers to have the abil­ity to ticket peo­ple found with 30 grams of mar­i­juana or less. Kentville, N.S., police Chief Mark Man­der, chair of the association’s drug-abuse com­mit­tee, said Tues­day offi­cers cur­rently have only two choices: turn a blind eye or lay down the law. Man­der said offi­cers could “either to cau­tion the offender or lay for­mal charges result­ing in [a] lengthy, dif­fi­cult process, which results in a crim­i­nal charge if proven, a crim­i­nal con­vic­tion, and a crim­i­nal record.” Man­der said tick­et­ing the offender would be far less oner­ous and expen­sive. How­ever, fed­eral Jus­tice Min­is­ter Peter MacKay said there are no plans in the works to legal­ize or decrim­i­nal­ize mar­i­juana. Though McKay had no fol­low up on the chiefs’ rec­om­men­da­tion, he said he appre­ci­ates their input. “We don’t sup­port legal­iza­tion or decrim­i­nal­iza­tion,” Man­der said. “Clearly there are cir­cum­stances where a for­mal charge for sim­ple pos­ses­sion is appro­pri­ate. How­ever, the large major­ity of sim­ple pos­ses­sion cases would be more effec­tively, effi­ciently dealt with [by issu­ing a ticket],” he added, not­ing the move would free up court time. The pres­i­dent of the asso­ci­a­tion and Van­cou­ver police Chief Jim Chu said the plan offers a good com­pro­mise. “It’s a mid­dle ground there, right? Noth­ing is noth­ing. All is a crim­i­nal record,” Chu said. Bill Van­de­graaf, an advo­cate for mar­i­juana use, said the ticket sys­tem amounts to decrim­i­nal­iza­tion. “They are dimin­ish­ing the seri­ous­ness of the offence,” said the for­mer Win­nipeg police offi­cer, a mem­ber of the group Law Enforce­ment Against Pro­hi­bi­tion who is cur­rently licensed to grow and use mar­i­juana for med­ical pur­poses. “They are turn­ing it into a com­mon offence where they issue tick­ets on the street.” Van­der­graaf called the pro­posal a good first step, but said it doesn’t go far enough. “If it’s going to be a com­mon offence notice, they might as well end pro­hi­bi­tion alto­gether,” he said. Many Amer­i­can states have moved to decrim­i­nal­ize or legal­ize mar­i­juana, but fed­eral laws remain unchanged. In Seat­tle last week, police offi­cers handed out bags of Dori­tos chips with copies of the state’s new pot laws at an annual mar­i­juana fes­ti­val. Wash­ing­ton state legal­ized weed in 2012. Source: CBC News Link: http://​www​.cbc​.ca/​n​e​w​s​/​c​a​n​a​d​a​/​n​o​v​a​-​s​c​o​t​i​a​/​s​t​o​r​y​/​2​0​1​3​/​0​8​/​2​0​/​m​b​-​p​o​l​i​c​e​-​c​h​i​e​f​s​-​p​o​t​-​m​a​r​i​j​u​a​n​a​-​t​i​c​k​e​t​-​m​a​c​k​a​y​-​l​e​g​a​l​i​z​e​.​h​t​m​l​?​c​m​p​=​rss

c1c2229f8cePhoto.jpg 150x112 Canadian Police Chiefs propose ticket System for Pot

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Cana­dian Police Chiefs pro­pose ticket Sys­tem for Pot

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