Toronto Campuses Grapple With Marijuana Policies Ahead of Legalization

Article by May Warren, Toronto Star

Toronto campuses grapple with marijuana policies ahead of legalization Students say zero tolerance won’t work. Dessy Pavlova, a medicinal cannabis user and member of the student lobby group Canadian Students for Sensible Drug Policy (CSSDP). (EDUARDO LIMA / STARMETRO TORONTO) By MAY WARREN Star Metro

This fall, students at Ryerson University will see a new educational campaign incorporated into the usual campus cautions about binge drinking and safe sex.

Responsible marijuana use.

As the government of Canada prepares to legalize the drug this summer, local universities and colleges are confronting a wave of questions around how to deal with it on campus, and the best way to talk to students about what will by next September go from forbidden to an out in the open part of the university experience.

At Ryerson, Allan Macdonald, director, student health and wellness, said a campus-wide campaign will approach marijuana use in a “serious straightforward manner” similar to the education already in place around alcohol.

“It’s not a should or shouldn’t, it’s a here’s the deal kind of thing,” he said.

“There’s a choice here for you. Abstinence is a choice. If you do choose to partake, here’s the harm that happens, here’s how you reduce your harm and prevent it.”

Ryerson also has an internal committee looking at their policies to get ready for the new legislation, said a spokesperson, as does York University. That school is “working on updating current policies and practices so that we are ready to respond once cannabis is legalized,” said spokesperson Janice Walls.

The University of Toronto has put together “a working group that is considering this issue and we want to wait until they finish their work,” said Elizabeth Church, interim director of media relations, in an email.

Read the full article here.

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