Marijuana plants grow at LifeLine Labs in Cottage Grove, Minn., in 2015. The looming deadline for legalized marijuana has local governments in British Columbia crafting wish lists for provincial legislation, from where pot should be grown to how it should be sold. File photo by THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

Health ministers to talk cannabis, opioids

Health ministers set to discuss cannabis and opioids during two-day meeting in Edmonton

Canada’s health ministers kick off a two-day meeting in Edmonton today, and topics on the agenda include the ongoing opioid crisis and the pending legalization of cannabis.

Deaths from opioid abuse are expected to surpass 3,000 this year, and the ministers say they need to compare notes on what is working and not working.

Related: Growing marijuana industry sparks new research around cannabis: scientists

Federal Health Minister Ginette Petipas Taylor will join them on Friday to deliver an update on plans to legalize recreational use of cannabis by July 1.

The federal government has set 18 as the minimum legal age, although provinces can set the age higher.

Some ministers say they are concerned, given that studies suggest cannabis can impact brain development in youth and legalizing marijuana can lead to more youth taking up smoking.

Related: Marijuana rules will be ‘a work in progress’

The ministers will also meet with Indigenous leaders, as well as discuss prescription drug reform and a national pharmacare program.

The Canadian Press

Just Posted

WATCH: Sparks fly as SUV speeds down wrong side of Highway 1 in Chilliwack trying to flee police

Captured on video, the vehicle headed westbound against oncoming traffic before crashing

Drugs and guns seized by Chilliwack Mounties in complex case

Drug trafficking investigations led to five arrests in three different locations across Chilliwack

Chilliwack RCMP trying to catch robbery suspect

Police hope someone will identify the person who appears in security camera footage

LETTER: Why is Jati Sidhu ashamed of his riding?

Lytton’s Christopher di Armani shares his dismay at the potential name change of the MP’s riding

Chilliwack churns out new generation of wildfire fighters

School district partners with B.C. Wildfire Service to prep Grade 12s for careers

Stolen Bentley spotted going wrong way down highway found in Summerland

The car has been recorded going the wrong way on the Coquihalla, found two days later

VIDEO: Vancouver fall to Seattle in Game 2 of the playoffs

Thunderbirds topple the Giants 4-1 in Langley, evening the Western Conference series one game each

Calgary captain has 3 points as Flames torch Canucks 3-1

Giordano leads way as Alberta side cracks 100-point plateau

1,300 cruise ship passengers rescued by helicopter amid storm off Norway’s coast

Rescue teams with helicopters and boats were sent to evacuate the cruise ship under extremely difficult circumstances

Province announces $18.6 million for B.C. Search and Rescue

The funding, spread over three years, to pay for operations, equipment, and training

Vancouver-bound transit bus involved in fatal crash near Seattle

One man was killed and a woman injured in crash with bus purchased by TransLink

Late-season wave of the flu makes its round in B.C.

BC Centre for Disease Control reported 50 per cent jump in flu cases in first weeks of March

Most Read