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Canada: Coleman declares war on drugs

Pubdate: Wed Dec 11 15:58:41 2002
Webpage: http://vancouver.cbc.ca/template/servlet/V... [translate]
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Coleman declares war on drugsWebPosted Dec 11 2002 12:39 PM PST

VICTORIA - B.C. Solicitor General Rich Coleman says the federal government's plan to decriminalize marijuana is bad public policy. Coleman -- a former RCMP officer and private security consultant -- says this is no time to soften the laws, because marijuana is a serious problem. "We have a drug that is 20, 30 times more potent than it was in the 70s, that trades kilo to kilo across the border in the U.S. for cocaine, that feeds into our speed and methamphetamines, and funnels into organized crime." In some of the toughest talk on drugs heard in the past decade from any B.C. politician, Coleman says the laws must provide a deterrent to traffickers. "I want us to go out and fight the war on drugs because it's hurting our kids, it's hurting our communities, and it's time we stood up to it, and we're going to do that," he says. However, Coleman appears to be bucking the current political trends. FROM DEC. 9, 2002: Drug report shows city on right track, says mayor In Vancouver, the new city council plans to open safe injection sites for intravenous drug users. And in Ottawa, federal Justice Minister Martin Cauchon says he plans to introduce legislation early next year to decriminalize marijuana. Drug laws in Canada are largely a federal issue.

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