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Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce

Call For Measures To Help The Cannabis Industry Amidst COVID-19

Alongside the Cannabis Council of Canada, Alberta Cannabis Council and Association québécoise de l’industrie du cannabis, our National Cannabis Working Group wrote to Ministers Hajdu and Anand asking for medical cannabis supply chains to be designated an essential service. It is critical that COVID-19 impacts do not interrupt hundreds of thousands of Canadians from accessing medical cannabis treatment.

The letter:


Hon. Patty Hajdu, P.C., M.P. Minister of Health
0900C2 Ottawa, Ontario, K1A 0K9

Hon. Anita Anand, P.C., M.P.
Minister of Public Services and Procurement
11 Laurier St, Phase III, Place du Portage Gatineau, Quebec, K1A 0S5

March 26, 2020

Ministers:

We are writing to you regarding access to medical cannabis, an issue important to hundreds of thousands of patients across Canada. As governments across the country respond to COVID-19 and grapple with determining what services are essential, we are asking that activities supporting the supply chain for medical cannabis be deemed an essential service at the federal level.

Medical cannabis is currently supplied directly to patients through the mail from licensed producers. The preservation of these mail services is essential for the health of these patients. Elderly and immunocompromised patients are already facing challenges social distancing now that Canada Post has stopped delivering packages requiring signatures, including medical cannabis, to their homes. A further scaling back or services as a result of the COVID-19 will create new barriers to accessing treatment, forcing patients to the unregulated illicit market.

Quebec and Ontario have both declared the production and sale of cannabis an essential service. We are asking your government to declare the supply of medical cannabis to patients at the federal level an essential service so that appropriate mail delivery services remain in place to support Canadians with serious medical conditions.

Sincerely,

Nathan Mison
Co-Chair
National Cannabis Working Group

George Smitherman President & CEO
Cannabis Council of Canada

John Carle
Executive Director Alberta Cannabis Council

Michel Timperio
Président
Association québécoise de l’industrie du cannabis

cc: Hon. Lawrence MacAulay, Minister of Veterans Affairs