John Ivison: Liberals Looking to Implement Roadside Tests for Pot Smokers, Says Trudeau’s Marijuana Czar

Article by John Ivison, National Post

FileLiberal MP Bill Blair: “We have the highest rates of cannabis use in the world among our young people. It’s unacceptable

Bill Blair, Canada’s pot czar, doesn’t sound impressed with the leak of the news that marijuana use will be legal by Canada Day 2018.

“That isn’t my date,” he harrumphed in an interview Wednesday. “I haven’t said anything about a timeline and the speculation is highly aspirational. There’s tons of work to do.”

But the former Toronto police chief turned MP said progress has been made since the task force charged with drawing up a framework for cannabis legalization reported in December.

One area where the task force was forced to concede it had no answers was the subject of impaired driving, where it said tests of drug-levels in bodily fluids could not be used as a reliable indicator of the degree of a driver’s impairment.

However, Blair said the government has been running trials of roadside oral-fluid tests in eight jurisdictions and he is “satisfied and pleased” with the results. “The devices have a good track record in other countries but we wanted to see whether they work in Canada because it’s a cold place,” he said.

If recommended by the appropriate scientific authority, Blair suggested legislative changes will be made to approve the use of saliva-based roadside devices in Canada.

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