The Issue

On July 24, 2017, the Ontario Pharmacists Association participated in a broad multi-stakeholder consultation coordinated by the Ministry of the Attorney General to elicit perspectives on the legalization of cannabis in Ontario. While the federal government established a set of baseline policies related to cannabis legalization, each province has until July 2018 to set their own policies and protocols regarding cannabis, including the setting of the minimum age, locations of retail sales and placed of use, among others.  Most of this consultation focused on recreational cannabis, although issues of medical forms were raised.

Our Role

As the federal government moves toward the legalization of cannabis (scheduled for July 1, 2018), provinces are working to develop their own regulatory frameworks that align with federal policy, but which also take the needs and preferences of residents into consideration. In Ontario, this framework will cover:

  • Retail and distribution
  • Impaired driving
  • Minimum age
  • Possession
  • Places of use
  • Home cultivation
  • Public education
  • Youth and young adult prevention, and harm reduction
  • Workplace safety
  • Responsible economic development

Representatives from OPA are participating in a Stakeholder Roundtable to provide input and feedback on Ontario’s approach to federal cannabis legalization.

OPA has already released its position statement on medical cannabis and support for pharmacists’ important role is dispensing.  While there are varying opinions amongst pharmacy professionals on the distribution of recreational cannabis, OPA will be articulating pharmacists’ thoughts on its appropriate distribution such that it is done in a socially responsible manner. 


Updates will be shared as they become available.