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Decriminalization would save policing costs long-term
To the Editor,
Re: Pot activist signing up volunteers, Aug. 27.
Starting Sept. 9, the Sensible B.C. campaign will begin collecting signatures in support of ending police enforcement of the law against possession of small quantities of cannabis in BC.
This would be a cost-saving measure, and would free up police resources to spend more time enforcing laws that protect our citizens.
Another benefit would be the avoidance of criminalizing otherwise law-abiding citizens. The stigma of a criminal record is life-changing, limiting opportunities in employment, education, and travel. An 18 year old who has the misfortune to be caught possessing cannabis faces a lifetime of restrictions that are detrimental to the individual and to society as a whole, because this person is not able to contribute as fully as would be possible without this stigma.
It is well established that the use of tobacco and alcohol impose more harms on our society than using cannabis. Prohibition did not work with alcohol, and it does not work with cannabis.
Please take the time to consider the impacts of the enforcement of these laws.