COMMONS
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Legal Weed is Bad for Poor People
We talk to a Liberal MP and a criminal defense lawyer about what legalisation means for the people who built the markets.
February 22, 2016

Canada has had a marijuana industry for a long time. It just hasn’t always been legal. People in the business have often ended up in prison, barred from crossing the border or denied future job prospects.

Now that the Liberals are planning to legalize weed, what will happen to those people?

Andray talks to Liberal MP for Beaches-East York Nathaniel Erskine-Smith and criminal defence lawyer John Struthers.

Following the interview, Nathaniel Erskine-Smith emailed us this message:

“I’ve been thinking more about the issue of reparations / rectifying the human costs of marijuana prohibition, and I’m not convinced that “reparations” is a helpful way of looking at the problem. For example, as was likely obvious from the interview, I don’t support Andray’s suggestion of providing grants or subsidies to former dealers to get back into the business. On the other hand, I do think we will need to review support initiatives for those granted amnesty / pardoned, in order to ensure that such individuals are given every opportunity to move past their previous records/incarceration, and given every opportunity to succeed.”

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For a century, Canada was one of the world’s leading exporters of asbestos, most of it mined from the small town of Asbestos, Quebec. But during that time, governments and corporations in Canada did everything they could to hide the fact that asbestos is deadly.
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Stories about the dirty business of Canadian mining.
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