Cannabis will be legal across Canada on October 17, 2018
While the federal Cannabis Act has received Royal Assent, until October 17, 2018, it remains illegal to buy, possess, or use cannabis for anything other than authorized medical or research purposes. Between now and October 17, 2018, law enforcement will continue to enforce existing laws.
On and after October 17, 2018, Canadians will be able to use cannabis recreationally. Each province and territory will have the ability to set its own rules for cannabis, including:
- Legal minimum age;
- Where you can buy it;
- Where you can use it; and
- How much you can possess.
You must respect the laws of the province, territory or Indigenous community you are in, whether you are a visitor or live there. Individual municipalities may also pass bylaws to regulate the use of cannabis locally. Check with your municipality for local information. It is illegal now and will remain illegal to take any amount of cannabis across Canada's international borders.
In Alberta, the following rules apply:
- You must be 18 to use cannabis.
- You must purchase it only from licensed stores or albertacannabis.org.
- 30 grams is the most you can buy or carry at a time
- You can't smoke in some public places - know your local laws.
- Driving high is illegal.
- Cannabis may not be within reach of anyone in a vehicle.
- Only 4 plants can be grown per household.
- Edibles are not yet legal to sell.
- Kids can't enter cannabis stores.
What does this mean for municipalities?
The legalization of cannabis for recreational use will affect municipalities in a number of areas, including land use management, business licensing, bylaws, public health and education, law enforcement, and human resource policies. As municipalities will need to understand local impacts, AUMA is working with our provincial and federal partners to ensure our members have the resources and supports they need to safely and effectively implement legalization.
A summary of AUMA’s advocacy on the legalization of cannabis for recreational use is shown in the table below:
|Federal/Provincial Government Activity||AUMA Advocacy|
|Federal consultation on legalizing cannabis
for recreational use
|AUMA response to federal consultation|
Federal Task Force on Cannabis Legalization and
|AUMA response to the Task Force Report|
|Bill C-45, the Cannabis Act of Canada|
|Provincial consultation on legalizing cannabis for
|Cannabis excise tax revenue sharing|
|AUMA Special Digest|
- The Government of Canada’s Cannabis Webpage
- The Government of Alberta’s Cannabis Webpage
- FCM Cannabis Webpage
- The City of Calgary’s Cannabis Webpage
- The City of Edmonton’s Cannabis Webpage
- Cannabis Stats Hub
- The University of Calgary’s Cannabis Evidence Series
Tools and Guides for Municipalities
- Cannabis Legal Resource for Municipalities
- FCM Cannabis Primer
- FCM Municipal Guide to Cannabis Legalization
- Tracking the Costs of Cannabis Legislation Tool (draft)
- Member Resource on the Municipal Regulation of Federally Licensed Medical Marijuana Production Facilities
- Association of Manitoba Municipalities - Guide to Zoning for Cannabis
- Brownlee LLP and Aurora Cannabis - Guide to Updating Land-Use Bylaws for Cannabis Retail
- Alberta Health Services - Recommendations on Cannabis Regulations for Alberta Municipalities
- Alberta Health Services – Public Health Perspectives on Cannabis Legalization in Alberta
- Cannabis and Public Health Webinars: Part I - Regulating Public Consumption
- Cannabis and Public Health Webinars: Part II - Developing Bylaws for Land-Use and Business Licensing
- The National Academy’s paper on the health effects of cannabis
- The Canadian Centre on Substance Use and Addiction’s Cannabis Webpage
- Government of Canada – Health Effects of Cannabis
- Centre for Addition and Mental Health - Canada’s Lower-Risk Cannabis Use Guidelines
- Resources for Updating Employee Drug and Alcohol Policies
- Alberta Health Services – Alcohol and Drug Testing in the Workplace
Parents and Children