May 24, 2022
SHARE
The Backbench
#36 Is Canada Ready to Decriminalize Drugs?
Parliament is heading towards a vote on an NDP Private Member’s Bill that would decriminalize drug possession for personal use, among other changes to address Canada’s overdose crisis. The Liberals have also proposed a bill that would amend the Controlled Drug and Substances Act. Garth Mullins of the Vancouver Area Network of Drug Users has been fighting for decriminalization for a long time as he’s watched friends die and get incarcerated. He talks about these two bills and his vision for healthy drug policy in Canada. 
Kevin Sexton
Producer
Tristan Capacchione
Audio Editor & Technical Producer
Kieran Oudshoorn
Managing Editor, Podcasts

Parliament is heading towards a vote on an NDP Private Member’s Bill that would decriminalize drug possession for personal use, among other changes to address Canada’s overdose crisis. The Liberals have also proposed a bill that would amend the Controlled Drug and Substances Act.

Garth Mullins of the Vancouver Area Network of Drug Users has been fighting for decriminalization for a long time as he’s watched friends die and get incarcerated. He talks about these two bills and his vision for healthy drug policy in Canada.

Links:

Sponsors: Oxio, The Peak, Ground News, Skipper Otto

More from this series
Armed conflicts across the world are increasingly demanding the attention of Canadians and prompting the federal government to get involved. This episode, host Mattea Roach is joined by Emilie Nicolas, Arshy Mann, and Steven Chase to talk about what Canadian intervention in Haiti could and should look like, and they also tackle the existential questions we have about our military: What is the state of our military? Are we prepared to take on an expanded role? Should we?
January 24, 2023
January 10, 2023
On December 14th, we brought The Backbench to you LIVE and in-person from the Hot Docs Cinema in Toronto. It was an evening of “serious” political discourse and endless laughs. Our host Mattea Roach and our expert panelists, Emilie Nicolas, David Moscrop, and Murad Hemmadi unpacked the seriously eventful year that was 2022 – from faulty infrastructure, to the Pope’s visit, to our 2023 political wish list, and more. 
December 27, 2022
In this episode, host Mattea Roach, and panelists, Karen Restoule, Jaskaran Sandhu, and Arshy Mann, unpack the controversial expansion for Medical Assistance in Dying (MAiD) set to change on March 17, 2023. Also, Canada is trying to re-establish itself on the international stage after announcing its Indo-Pacific Strategy in Beautiful British Columbia. Does Canada’s future lie in the Indo-Pacific?
December 13, 2022
The six weeks of dramatic testimony have officially come to an end with testimony from the Prime Minister himself. Join our host, Mattea Roach, and an exceptional panel with Stuart Thomson, David Moscrop, and Sandy Garossino for a deep retrospective on Trudeau’s invocation of the Emergencies Act against the 'Freedom Convoy' this past February. Also, the Green Party has a “new” leader. Welcome back Elizabeth May. This episode Mattea and our panelists discuss the future of the Green Party.
November 29, 2022
Financial Minister Chrystia Freeland’s mini-budget is at your service to save us from inflation. Or is it Justin-flation? This week our host, Mattea Roach, is joined by Emilie Nicolas, Murad Hemmadi, and Nick-Taylor Vaisey to talk about the effectiveness of the proposed budget, the impending recession, and the “costly-coalition.” They also tackle the increasingly common use of the notwithstanding clause—what does it mean, and should we be worried?
November 15, 2022
BC NDP leadership candidate Anjali Appadurai had the rug pulled out from under her. This week Mattea Roach is joined with Stuart Thomson, Jaskaran Sandhu, and Arno Kopecky to talk about how and why the BC-NDP ended up disqualifying Appadurai, leaving David Eby to be sworn in as Premier of British Columbia. Also, this week the backbenchers talk about the Federal handgun freeze that is supposedly the strongest action in a generation. We’ll see about that…
November 1, 2022
What is going on in the Wild Rose Country? Mattea Roach is joined by experts Catherine Griwkowksy, Emilie Nicolas, and David Moscrop. Together they unpack the implications of Alberta’s new premier's calls for more sovereignty and the possible unravelling of our beloved Canadian federalism. This week we also get into Canada’s complicated diplomatic response to the Iranian protests.
October 18, 2022
all podcasts arrow All Podcasts
The Backbench