Medical marijuana patients can thank the Supreme Court of Canada. Yesterday, Canada’s top judges unanimously knocked down two sections of the government’s heavy-handed rules on medical marijuana that dealt specifically with possession and production, but not the sale.
The court found that the current restriction to dried marijuana violates the right to liberty and security “in a manner that is arbitrary and hence not in accord with the principles of fundamental justice” and that limiting medical consumption to dried marijuana infringes on the liberty protections under section seven of the Charter of Rights. Starting immediately, medical marijuana patients will now be able to consume marijuana – and not just smoke it – as well as use other extracts and derivatives.
Since the beginning of its medical cannabis program, Health Canada has given patients an authorization to possess and grow cannabis for medical reasons, but it has prohibited them from extracting the resins or other active chemicals by making tea, hash or butter to make cookies and other edibles. For many patients, especially children and the elderly, using cannabis extracts is the only reasonable method of ingestion.
However, medical marijuana patients should still be concerned, given that today’s ruling only deals with one half of the issue around cannabis derivatives. The case only dealt with the criminal prohibitions around possessing and producing cannabis, and how patients can get exemptions, not with the regulations on who can sell marijuana.
Med Pot Now is thrilled by the Supreme Court decision as it opens the right of the patient to gain access to medical cannabis in any form. Furthermore, this ruling confirms that medical cannabis should and can be used to treat many different ailments. Slowly, we move away from the stigma that has been attached to Cannabis for far too long and appreciate this plant for all its medicinal wonders.