Ronald Chartier uses cannabis to treat pain and anxiety derived from a serious car crash he suffered, and a previous bout with cancer. But now the Régie du Logement (the government body which regulates landlord/tenant relationships in Quebec) has ruled that Chartier has been evicted because of the smell of the smoke.
The complaint came from one of the buildings co-owners, who lives below Chartier. Chartier says that even when he began smoking outside the landlord continued to complain.
One of the reasons the Régie cited for Chartier's eviction was his lack of cooperation. They claim that Chartier refused to try other forms of medication and has not proven that he needs to use medical marijuana.
"They said I don’t try enough with other medications," Chartier told iHeartRADIO. "For them I should have used something else."
Jonathan Franklin, a tenants rights lawyer says people in Quebec have the right to smoke in their apartments unless explicitly stated in their lease agreement.
"Every neighbour, according to Quebec law, has to put up with a certain amount of inconvenience," Franklin said. "If smoking is not prohibited, then whether it’s tobacco or marijuana, I wouldn’t necessarily see the difference."
Chartier, who is now working with social services to find a new place to live, sees this as more than just discrimination against smokers, but as a serious violation of his personal rights.
"I have to deal with this for the rest of my life. I think I should be able to choose what I take that is the best for me."