Stress from the CSU to drive out the 25-year-old charitable compassion membership; VCBC plans to combat – Breaking hashish information immediately
Under pressure from the province, the Victoria Cannabis Buyers Club, also known as VCBC, received an eviction notice. If they are unable to change this course of action, this industry-thorough, nonprofit compassion club will be forced to leave its address for more than two decades. The Provincial Community Safety Unit, also known as the CSU, is threatening legal action against its landlord. Unless something changes, the VCBC must be out by March 31st. For the medical cannabis community, this news is grim, but the battle is not over yet. Here’s all the details on VCBC’s eviction risk, including what actions you plan to take and how you can help.
Important background information
The VCBC has been providing access to safe, high quality medical cannabis since 1996 and campaigns for the rights of medical cannabis patients. The government has tried to close them down several times, and for several important reasons:
- Before The VCBC was registered as a nonprofit in 2012, the company was always a very inexpensive compassion club and was never focused on profit. It was always about helping sick people.
- They deliver products that are not available anywhere on the legal market. For example cannabis suppositories.
As it is currently being written, the VCBC could never comply with the cannabis law. This would make it impossible for the organization to continue providing the products and services on which its membership depends. They only provide medication to terminally ill patients and are the option in many cases.
An exception to the cannabis law
Refusing to comply with current cannabis regulations means enforcement action, and the VCBC is no stranger to that. With the assistance of the Mayor and Council of Victoria and Attorney General Mike Farnworth, the VCBC is currently seeking a federal exemption from the Cannabis Act. They pay their rent on time, have good relationships with their neighbors, and provide important service. In addition, we are in the middle of a global pandemic and the VCBC is offering drugs. Why is it happening?
According to the Ministry of Health, the CSU “runs the provincial compliance and enforcement program on market terms and has a complaint-managed program across the province.” Basically the answer is that the VCBC is involved in the bureaucratic process of the federal government and that the unit is only “doing its job” in the meantime.
The answer from the VCBC
Ted Smith, the founder and president of the VCBC board of directors, is a veteran of the war on drugs and has published his plan of action.
The four strategies for saving the club are:
- Pressure on British Columbia cabinet to grant the VCBC a temporary exemption to halt the eviction pending Health Canada decision on an exemption from that level of government;
- Prepare to file an injunction with our legal team at JFK Law Corporation to suspend threats against the landlord and any other punitive action taken by the Community Safety Unit until Health Canada decides an exception.
- Daily protests at noon during the week following COVID protocols at the Department of Health to pressure British Columbia Minister of Health Adrian Dix to recognize the benefits of cannabis as a substitute for opiates and to lobby for the VCBC to get its exemption Cabinet colleagues;
- Submit a full exemption form from our legal representatives at JFK Law Corporation to Health Canada by the end of February. Attempts were made at the last minute to collect letters of support from members, politicians and supporters.
In addition to these strategies, the VCBC hopes to work with Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry, for a letter in support of an exception to the cannabis law. Ted Smith wrote an open letter to Dr. Henry; Click to read “To Dr. Bonnie Henry: Please Help”.
Last way out
While this fight is not over yet, the possibility that the VCBC will be evicted is very real. In this case, how will this non-profit organization care for and care for their dependent medical patients? In the worst case, the last resort is to sell their products outside the town hall. If the VCBC doesn’t find another solution on April 1st, this could become a reality.
How can you help
This situation is about so much more than an organization, it is about the rights of medical patients in Canada and our government’s refusal to prioritize them. Please support the VCBC in its efforts to remain open by contacting your Provincial and Bundestag MPs as well as public figures such as Dr. Bonnie Henry write. Your voice is louder and more powerful than you know; If you or someone you know uses medicinal cannabis, please speak on their behalf.