17 30TH ANNIVERSARY CRIME PREVENTION GUIDE Congratulations once again to the PEI Police Association for continuing their good work in the community in producing their 30th Annual Crime Prevention Guide. The theme selected for this year’s guide is ‘Cannabis Awareness’ which has become an all too familiar discussion piece lately. • Just as a background, on October 17, 2018, the Cannabis Act came into force in Canada with a strict framework in place for controlling cannabis, which includes: sale, possession, production and distribution. One of the main purposes of the Cannabis Act is to: prevent youth from accessing cannabis and displace the illegal cannabis market. Protecting the health and safety of youth is a top priority with this act. The Cannabis Act establishes serious criminal penalties for those who: sell or provide cannabis to youth and who use youth to commit a cannabis offence. The Cannabis Act also protects public health and safety by: setting rules for adults to access quality-controlled cannabis and creating a new, tightly regulated supply chain. Possession offences for adults are as follows: • Public possession of more than 30 grams. (or equivalent) *Note that there is no possession limit for private places • Possession of any ‘illicit cannabis’ • Public possession of any budding or flowering plants • Possession, in any place, of more than four plants that are not budding or flowering Possession offences for youth are as follows: • Possession of more than 5 grams (or equivalent) • Public possession of any budding or flowering plants • Possession, in any place, of more than four plants that are not budding or flowering As we are all aware, cannabis stores which are run by individual provinces and the federal government are now in place in every province and territory across the nation. In October 2019, the Cannabis Act and Cannabis Regulations were amended to permit the authorized sale of three new classes of cannabis: edible cannabis, cannabis extracts, and cannabis topicals. Even though restrictions are in place across the nation, drug-impaired driving continues to be an issue. Law enforcement personnel are trained to detect drivers who continue to drive high by administering field sobriety tests. The long-term effects of cannabis on your brain can include an increased risk of addiction along with memory issues, concentration, intelligence and the ability to think and make decisions. Studies have shown that the effects of frequent use of cannabis can last from several days, to months or longer after you stop using cannabis and may lead to serious health concerns such as lung disease. These effects may not be fully reversible even when cannabis use stops. In closing, parents please talk to your child about the effects listed above in that cannabis use can have drastic implications on your child’s long-term health. J. David Poirier Chief of Police Summerside Police Services MESSAGE FROM THE SUMMERSIDE CHIEF OF POLICE