Article by 680 News
Toronto Mayor John Tory believes the possession of small amounts of marijuana for personal use should have been decriminalized “years ago” but says Toronto police should continue to target illegal dispensaries across the city.
Tory’s comments Tuesday came a day after the Toronto board of health voted in favour of the immediate decriminalization of marijuana. It also recommended a legal age of 19.
“I very much favour, as soon as possible, the notion that people should not have a criminal record for simple possession of small amounts of marijuana. That’s something that should have been done years ago,” Tory said from city hall on Tuesday, where he was hosting a delegation of politicians from Dallas.
The mayor seemed fine with the board of health’s recommended age of 19 once marijuana is officially legal. The federal government has recommended a legal age of 18, giving provinces their own leeway.
“That’s the age of alcohol so maybe it should be the same age,” he said.
But Tory said Toronto police should remain vigilant when it comes to the slew of dispensaries that have leapfrogged the legal process.
“I’m much more concerned … with people who are assuming that the new rules are in place or there aren’t going to be any rules and that these shops continue to pop up in neighbourhoods.”
“That is not something that has been legalized,” he maintained. “The federal government has said nothing about having some wide network of shops on every street corner pop up to sell marijuana.”