Article by David Brown, Lift
Alistair MacGregor, NDP Critic for Justice, says he is concerned that Canadians are still being arrested for cannabis prior to legalization and is open to the idea of amnesty for some with past charges for cannabis possession.
In Justice Committee earlier this month, MacGregor requested more information from the government’s justice minister, the Honourable Jody Wilson-Raybould, regarding legalization of marijuana.
The Justice Minister is expected to appear before the standing committee on justice and human rights on May 4. The Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights studies the bills, policies, programs and spending of the Department of Justice and the six federal agencies related to its portfolio. The Department of Justice (Wilson-Raybould) is one of three government agencies tasked with managing the legalization ticket, along with the Department of Health (Jane Philpott) and Public Safety Canada (Ralph Goodale).
MacGregor, the MP for Cowichan—Malahat—Langford on Vancouver Island, says he hopes the justice minister is able to soon provide specific “plans and priorities” for implementing legalization.
“Since the Liberal party made this promise, and up until now, I’m really curious how many Canadians have received criminal records and charges while we’re waiting for legalization and regulation to come forward.” Alistair MacGregor, Member of Parliament Cowichan—Malahat—Langford., Critic for Justice
In an interview with Lift, MacGregor says he’s frustrated by the government’s lack of clarity on a timeline for legislation, and wants to ensure the government is being held to account on this ticket. When he’s requested more information in the past from Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale, he says he’s been unhappy with the reply.