Canada Moves to Decriminalize Possession of ‘Hard’ Drugs

On Tuesday, May 31, the Canadian government made a ruling that was the first of its kind for the country. Starting on January 31, 2023, the province of British Columbia will conduct a trial—lasting three years—in which people over the age of 18 will be able to possess up to 2.5 grams of opioids, cocaine, methamphetamine, and MDMA without arrest, seizure, or charge. Canada joins a handful of countries with existing decriminalization policies; others include Portugal, the Czech Republic, the Netherlands, and the United States (Oregon decriminalized possessing small amounts of hard drugs back in 2020).

A decriminalized drug resides in a

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