With the legalization of recreational marijuana fast approaching, police across the province have a lot of work to do in a short period of time. The government plans to make cannabis legal by July 1st, 2018.
Figuring out how to police pot users is just one of the hot topics on the agenda during a two-day meeting that began Monday in Kingston featuring some of Ontario’s top cops.
Training is top of mind. In this province alone, 20,000 officers will need to be trained. But there are a lot of unknowns when it comes to what it will consist of.
“The cost to send officers to the United States to be trained, as well as the availability of training courses is very challenging,” said Chief Bryan Larkin of the Waterloo Regional Police Service. “We need to double the number of drug recognition experts in the province.”
Larkin, who is also the President of the Ontario Association of Chiefs of Police, added that the intense training will be in addition to organizations’ day-to-day operations in their respective communities.