Windsor police chief wants more time and money to deal with legalized pot
Published Friday, August 10, 2018 9:26AM EDT
Last Updated Friday, August 10, 2018 9:37AM EDT
Windsor’s top cop wants more time to deal with the legalization of marijuana.
“The challenges are big,” says Police Chief Al Frederick, who wants more time to train officers. “We need another six months to be prepared, but more time would be preferable."
Canadians will be able to legally purchase and consume recreational marijuana as of October 17.
Frederick also wants more money.
Canada's Health Minister Ginette Petitpas Taylor was in Windsor this week and told the police chief the federal government will spread out $200-million across the country for the implementation of the new law.
"That's not much,” says Frederick. “I don't think that's a big enough financial commitment."
Frederick is also concerned about the new Ontario government’s plan to switch from a single-store model to potentially dozens of private stores across the city.
But there is some encouraging news regarding impaired driving by drugs.
The government has announced it has selected a new roadside device that will test for THC in the driver's saliva. A positive test could lead to a blood test back at the police station.
“There will be challenges in respect to this new device and until the efficacy and dependability of this new device is proven through the rigours of court challenges," says Frederick.
New data from Stats Canada can shows the use of marijuana is already wide-spread.
It found 1.4 million people admitted to being a passenger in a vehicle driven by someone who had consumed cannabis in the previous two hours.
Windsor’s police chief anticipates that number to rise.
“When you make a drug available, there will be a spike, an increase in usage, especially among young people, so from that perspective, it's not status quo.”
The study also found one in seven pot users say they drove at least once within two hours of using the drug. It also shows about 4.6 million Canadians over the age of 15 had used cannabis at least once in the last three months.