Source: WestEnder.com

A group of B.C. public health officers has actually joined a growing union of policy leaders urging the legalization and tax of cannabis.

The Health Officers Council of B.C. voted to supported Stop the Violence B.C. and called for policy of unlawful elements like cannabis to minimize the damage from substance use and the unintended consequences of government policies.

âEURœThe Health OfficerâEUR ™ s Council and other professionals are not saying that cannabis should be legalized and taxed due to the fact that it is safe, âEUR stated Dr. Paul Hasselback, a Vancouver Island medical health officer who chairs the council.

âEURœWe are saying that proven public health techniques need to be utilized to constrain its use. There is now more risk to the publicâEUR ™ s health in perpetuating a market driven by criminal activity.âEUR The union argues prohibition has failed and enforcement has little impact on substance abuse, merely fueling the $7-billion unlawful pot market that experts say is directly linked to the spike in gang-related killings considering that 1997.

A report released by Stop the Violence says teenagers find it simple to purchase cannabis and pot use amongst them is up substantially given that the 1990s, regardless of heavy spending on drug enforcement.

âEURœBy every metric, this policy is failing to satisfy its goals, âEUR said Dr. Evan Wood, a Vancouver physician and founder of the coalition.

By managing the market, he said, the distribution and use of cannabis would be more controlled and would also eliminate the mob from the formula.

It would also provide a source of tax revenue in the hundreds of millions, he added.

B.C. provincial health officer Dr. Perry Kendall stated he typically concurs with the general public health officersâEUR ™ statement on cannabis reform although he was not formally part of their recommendation.

âEURœI support their call for a review of the effectiveness of existing restriction and criminalization and conversation of a more reliable public health-based method, âEUR Kendall said.

Marijuana arrests in Canada climbed up from 39,000 in 1990 to more than 65,000 in 2009, according to the coalition.

An estimated 27 percent of young B.C. residents aged 15-24 utilized pot at least once in 2008, according to one poll. Four former Vancouver mayors have also backed the union. âEUR” Jeff Nagel