The last year has been monumental for cannabis legalization, with Uruguay, Colorado, and Washington State legalizing marijuana for adult recreational use. We also have a lot to celebrate in Canada, as the MMAR Coalition of Repeal has just blocked Health Canada’s new marijuana laws (MMPR or Marihuana for Medical Purposes Regulations) which served to outlaw patients who grow their own medicine or designate someone on their behalf. Led by constitutional lawyer John C. Conroy Q.C., this coalition has allowed patients and designated growers to continue to produce their own marijuana until the court injunction releases a final decision. To celebrate this exciting progression during the 420 weekend, I went to Hanna, Alberta to visit cannabis patient, grower and marijuana mom extraordinaire Tamara Cartwright-Poulits. Tamara is the Alberta Representative for the MMAR Coalition of Repeal, as well of the founder Canadian Students for Sensible Drug Policy’s Lethbridge Chapter.
As a current member of the NORML Women’s Alliance, Tamara is a fierce activist for medical cannabis in Alberta, one of the most conservative provinces in Canada. Tamara and I met in Montreal at the Liberal Party Convention, where they bonded over rural Alberta life and being women in a male dominated field of activism. Tamara gives hope to all of Canada, in that she has never stopped being a cannabis activist and fighting for her right to grow. As a mother, she risks so much due to our country’s confusing marijuana laws, as depending on how police interpret Health Canada’s website, she could have her kids taken away just by the vagueness of the new rules. Tamara is a great example of how you don’t need to live in a big city to celebrate 420, as she opened her ranch over 420 weekend to support other activists who are fighting the good fight. I sat down with Tamara on 420 and talked about the challenges involved in being a part of Health Canada’s MMAR program and the future of cannabis legalization in Canada. Check out the podcast below!