Canadian Patient Granted Right to Possess 1 Kilo of Medical Marijuana by Federal Court

A medical marijuana patient in Canada was just granted the ability to possess one kilogram of cannabis, an amount that equals a ten day supply for the patient and far exceeds the typical 150 gram limit.

Allan Harris argued that the Canadian government's limits on how much medical marijuana a patient can possess at one time was in violation of his constitutional rights. Harris has been prescribed a daily dose of 100 grams of cannabis by his doctor and the legal limit on medical marijuana possession is set at 150 grams. Harris said this meant his ability to travel was significantly restricted and required him to pay high shipping fees associated with making multiple smaller orders.

When the court delivered its ruling, Justice Henry Brown agreed with Harris' arguments.

"In effect, Harris is under a form of home arrest brought about solely because of the inadequately low cumulative total possession limit manifesting itself in the circumstances of his particular case," he said.

Brown granted Harris an exemption, allowing him to possess one kilogram of cannabis at a time, amounting to a 10-day supply of medication.

The fact that Harris had to fight for the right to possess medication that would last him more than a day and a half proves that medical marijuana patients are still being discriminated against, said cannabis activist Jodie Emery.

"Medical cannabis has been under attack by government for decades, and it is only through the courts that patients are granted protection from harmful, unjustified cannabis prohibition laws," Emery told CBC.

Dr. Jürgen Rehm—senior scientist at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health—agrees. He said the Canadian government has a lot of work to do in cleaning up their medical marijuana program.

"Currently, medical cannabis law regulations are a mess," he said.

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