Is Canada about to allow marijuana use in hotels? Now that the country is gearing up for total legalization, it’s certainly possible. Can we expect cannabis-friendly hotels throughout the country? Or will we see even more regulations? What would this ultimately look like for the Canadian tourism industry?
Cannabis in Canada
Canada has major changes in the works. Thanks to a combination of progressive thinking and the leadership of Justin Trudeau, the nation is close to lifting the prohibition on recreational cannabis. On April 13, Bill C-45, also known as The Cannabis Act, was introduced to Parliament. Sponsored by Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada Jody Wilson-Raybould, Bill C-45 called for a change in the law to allow Canadian citizens over the age of 18 to legally purchase and consume cannabis without a doctor’s recommendation.
The bill gained overwhelming support from Parliament. Recently, Bill C-45 passed in the House of Commons by a landslide vote. It will now move on to the Senate, where Canadian senators will get a chance to vote on it.
The proposed enactment of Bill C-45 is July 2018. And the provinces in Canada are working diligently to iron out the details in their communities, like the minimum age of consumption and zoning issues. While the end of cannabis prohibition promises positive social change in the country, the benefits to Canadian businesses are undeniable.
The Justice Minister of Alberta, Kathleen Ganley, just announced that when the Cannabis Act officially comes to realization, the province will allow hotel owners to permit their guests to consume cannabis on their properties. Specifically, anywhere tobacco is permitted, cannabis will also be allowed. Alberta is set to be the first province to make this decision.
This law could prove to be a boon for the hotel business and tourism industry. Since many hotel franchises in Canada prohibit smoking tobacco in their buildings, this new law could especially benefit smaller, independently owned establishments.
Indeed, owners and managers of small hospitality businesses in the province have expressed optimism about this important decision. The consensus among them is that the law will drive tourists to Alberta. And specifically, to the independent hotels and inns that permit tobacco, and thus cannabis.
However, it is important to note that since hotels are private property, the owners and managers retain the right to not allow marijuana use in hotels as well.
Final Hit: How Marijuana Use In Hotels Could Create Huge Industry
While a nationwide legalization of cannabis will likely prove to be beneficial for the country, it seems to be all about the details. Especially on location. Some provinces have already proposed limiting cannabis consumption to a private residence. While using cannabis will be technically legal, these proposed restrictions could leave Canadian citizens and tourists right where they started. Unable to enjoy the herb in a legal way. So in order to better promote health and safety when it comes to cannabis consumption, wouldn’t it be logical to provide people with a safe and well-regulated environment?