One of the largest and most pressing questions on the minds of the masses after the arrival of Canadian cannabis legalization on October 17, 2018 involved the matter of what to do with the simple possession charges incurred by citizens pre-legislation.
The introduction of Bill C93 by the federal government offers the first small steps in a promising direction, and will enable – free of charge – simple cannabis possession charges to be wiped from the records of Canadian citizens.
While C93 offers a pardon for conviction, what is does not offer is expungement. Where the Canadian database will no longer show a criminal conviction, the incursion could still show up on international databases where individuals may have had prior contact or issues while traveling between borders.
It also does not allow for the truncation of any sentencing currently being carried out, and any community service obligations or connected requirements stemming from a prior conviction will still need to be honoured.
Many cannabis advocates and activists feel that a lot more still needs to be done, but any and all progress is welcomed by that segment of the population previously living under the weight of a prior simple possession conviction.
Puff Puff Post will continue to provide updates on Bill C93 as they arise.
More information on the bill can be found here: https://www.canada.ca/en/public-safety-canada/news/2019/06/bill-c-93–no-fee-expedited-pardons-for-simple-possession-of-cannabis.html