Article by Julia Veintrop, Cannabis Life Network
Where Are All These Opioids Coming From?
It all started with the Trans Pacific Partnership.
Signed in 2008 by Canada, it included a total of 12 nations, and it was pro-corporate, customs law-slashing, tariff eliminating, and negotiated in secret from 2010 to 2015. This highly controversial agreement slashed hundreds of trade fees and restrictions that protected the rights of the public.
New rules by the TPP allow new individual patents for various uses and doses of older drugs with expiring patents. Instead of having one patent, the TPP grants an individual patent, for example, to Viagra as a blood pressure medication at each dose available, then grants additional, separate patents to every dose of Viagra for Erectile Dysfunction.
The TPP increased restrictions for generic drug companies, limiting competition between them. Without having several drug companies producing the same medication, access to drugs is greatly reduced, causing extremely high health care costs.
In my opinion, the most civilly devastating aspect of the Trans Pacific Partnership is the fact that it eliminates a lot of rules, thus, making it outrageously easy to buy any pharmaceutical online. Many people are simply taking a chance Googling the black market, and buying a bottle of pills with a prepaid credit card…and getting exactly what they were looking for. The other option is for a drug dealer to buy legal, bulk pharmaceutical compounds and mix them together in a basement lab. All the necessary equipment can be legally purchased online as so many questions are no longer asked.
If you look at the statistics released by The BC Coroners Service, you cannot argue with the fact that since Canada signed the Trans Pacific Partnership, the opioid epidemic in Canada has steadily escalated.
Illicit Drug Overdose Deaths and Death Rate per 100,000 population; 1990 – 2016; BC Coroners Service
Why hasn’t Canada actually legalized cannabis yet?
Thank the Single Convention On Narcotic Drugs Treaty!
Currently with over 185 State Parties, including The Holy See, this Treaty was signed in 1964 to prohibit the global production and supply of classified narcotics. Essentially, this is done using a series of four classifications, creating a uniform attitude towards each drug for the purpose of identical policies between State Parties.
Cannabis is classified as a Schedule IV narcotic; this is the most restricted level of classification where you will find drugs like Heroin, labelled as having “particularly dangerous properties.” Article 36 of the treaty requires that Parties implement various measures against “cultivation, production, manufacture, extraction, preparation, possession, offering, offering for sale, distribution, purchase, sale, delivery on any terms whatsoever, brokerage, dispatch, dispatch in transit, transport, importation and exportation of drugs contrary to the provisions of this Convention”.
The consequences for noncompliance to The Single Convention Of Narcotic Drugs Treaty are penal sanctions and at one point, there were even talks of using an embargo.