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Buzz Kill: The Corporatization of Cannabis



Michael DeVillaer

Authors : Michael R. DeVillaer

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The history of our legal alcohol and tobacco industries has been one of compromising public health and safety for corporate profit. The pharmaceutical industry has also been prone to the same miscarriage of priorities. Governments have been tolerant and forgiving of regulatory transgressions and corporate crime by these industries. The legalization of cannabis in Canada offered an opportunity to create a new drug industry that would get it right. In its legalization campaign, The Liberal Party of Canada, not only failed to get it right – it planned it that way. Buzz Kill: The Corporatization of Cannabis tells the story of one of Canada’s least understood drug policy failures that quietly unfolded beneath the two much louder pandemics of drug overdose deaths and Covid-19. Buzz Kill also warns that, without a new direction, Canada’s approach to drug policy will continue to put Canadians at risk as more drugs are legalized with a priority of corporate profiteering. Finally, Buzz Kill explains that it does not have to be this way - describing viable alternatives recommended by public health experts in Canada and abroad. All we need is the political will to put people before profits.

Cannabis Legalization: Lessons from Alcohol, Tobacco, Pharma.
Video Recording from: McGill University Institute for Health and Social Policy (IHSP) “Legalizing Marijuana in Canada: Policy Challenges” Conference. Montreal. April 26-27, 2018.


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