Are Drugs Legal in Vancouver?

Are Drugs Legal in Vancouver

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“Are drugs legal in Vancouver?”

Drug laws are slowly becoming more lenient here in British Columbia. This year alone has been monumental for drug reform in Vancouver.

Drug problems like the opioid crisis have affected every region of the country, but in particular, many Canadians in Vancouver struggle with addiction and the harm that comes from it.

woman preparing heroin in a spoon

Decriminalization of Drug Use in Vancouver

Activists for legal reform in Vancouver have been pushing for more lenient drug laws in our city. They argue that criminalization of victimless drug crimes only perpetuates the problem, and punishes those who are already suffering.

Earlier this year, the city of Vancouver made a final submission seeking federal exemption to decriminalize simple drug possession. The submission proposed initial possession thresholds of as much as two grams of opioids including heroin and fentanyl, three grams of cocaine, one gram of crack cocaine and 1.5 grams of amphetamines – the drugs most commonly involved in fatal overdoses.

The reasoning behind these thresholds is that these amounts are, on average, an amount that can satiate a user for three or more days, which would prevent users from needing to acquire drugs on a daily basis.

This means that, if enacted into law, possession of these amounts of drugs would no longer carry criminal charges. 

This may sound like great news, but hang on before you go off to stock up on whatever it is you use in your free time. 

None of these proposals are laws yet – meaning many drugs are still illegal in Vancouver.

Drugs that are Legal in Canada (2021)

The Controlled Drugs and Substances Act still applies to all of Canada, including Vancouver.

As you’re likely well aware, in 2018 cannabis was removed from this list, and recreationally legalized. While there are still laws pertaining to the distribution and consumption of cannabis, it is perfectly legal to smoke weed in Vancouver.

And, if you have a past conviction for cannabis possession, you can be pardoned for free by applying for a cannabis record suspension.

Besides marijuana, almost all recreational drugs are still illegal in Canada. This means that simple possession of an illicit drug can lead to criminal charges.

And though decriminalization may be on the way, there is no guarantee that these charges will be pardoned like they were for marijuana.

commercial civil litigation lawyers Rob Dhanu and Rasjovan Dale

Avoid Criminal Charges for Drug Possession

Obviously, criminalizing drugs doesn’t stop people from using them. A true solution to the drug epidemic in Canada will require compassion, nuance, and a lot of hard work.

At Dhanu Dhaliwal Law Group, we understand that just quitting is not an option, and that the law as it stands is not helping people kick their addictions. That’s why we founded our firm on Real Life Legal Solutions.

When it comes to charges for drug possession, this means doing everything in our power to prevent you from a permanent criminal record. It also means aiding you in recovering and getting the help you need.

We have extensive knowledge of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms so we can best defend your rights from unlawful search and seizure. We have also successfully dealt with a variety of cases involving all manner of substances, ranging from just a gram to multi-kilo level amounts of drugs like cocaine, heroin, opiates, methamphetamine, fentanyl, and more.

To get the best representation in BC, contact our offices by calling the number above or by filling out our contact form. 

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