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MP Strahl Concerned About Liberal Plans to Repeal Anti-Drug Strategy, Legalize Marijuana

CHILLIWACK-HOPE – Mark Strahl, MP for Chilliwack-Hope raised concerns regarding the Liberal government’s plan to repeal the Respect for Communities Act, and recommendations in the report from the Liberal government’s Task Force on Cannabis Legalization and Regulation.

On Monday, the Federal Health Minister announced that the Liberals are repealing the Respect for Communities Act put in place by the previous Conservative Government.

“Canadian families expect safe and healthy communities in which to raise their children,” said Strahl. “The Respect for Communities Act gives police, residents, and municipal leaders a say when it comes to opening an injection site in their community.”

“Instead of making it easier for drug addicts to consume drugs, the Liberal Government should support treatment and recovery programs to get addicts off drugs, and enact heavy mandatory minimum sentences to crack down on drug traffickers,” added Strahl. “Dangerous and addictive drugs tear families apart, promote criminal behaviour, and destroy lives.”

The Liberal government’s Task Force on Cannabis Legalization and Regulation also announced its recommendations on how the government should proceed with the legalization of recreational marijuana.

The Task Force recommended that marijuana sales should be restricted to those 18 and older This is goes against the advice of The Canadian Medical Association, which maintains that even occasional pot can cause serious negative psychological effects on brain development up to age 25, and recommended a legal minimum age of 21.

The Task Force acknowledged that police do not have the tools to keep our streets safe from increased drug impaired driving, and significant resources are required to equip them to deal with it.

“I am deeply concerned by the report put forward by the Marijuana Task Force,” said Strahl. “It contains serious shortcomings with respect to both the protection of young people and public safety.”

“While the Liberals are abandoning community consultations with their proposals, I will be consulting my constituents directly on these issues through my regular public meetings and through paper based and online surveys in the New Year,” said Strahl. “I will report these views back to the Liberal government even if they no longer want to hear them.”