On marijuana

Six of the eight NDP leadership candidates respond to a survey on drug policy. All six seem to support some kind of decriminalization around marijuana and three (Niki Ashton, Peggy Nash and Romeo Saganash) seem open to pursuing a regulatory approach. Here is how Mr. Saganash explains his position.

A proposition in California suggested that it is time to look at full legalization, regulation and taxation. Medical authorities have recently made the same recommendation. This deserves serious study. Marijuana is no more harmful than alcohol, and unlike alcohol, it is non-addictive. The criminalization of marijuana creates ties to other crime, just as prohibition did with alcohol. Criminalization creates an enormous cost for the justice system, the penal system, and for society as a whole when we incarcerate tens of thousands of our young people. In the interim, decriminalization is the least we can do toward reducing the harm inflicted by our current legislation.

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