Sensible BC launches campaign in Prince Rupert

Sensible BC has high hopes of decriminalizing marijuana possession, and wants pro-pot Rupertites to help.

Sensible BC has high hopes of decriminalizing marijuana possession, and wants pro-pot Rupertites to help.

Dana Larsen, director of Sensible BC, said made a stop in Prince Rupert last Tuesday, with about a dozen Rupertites attending the event. Larsen said people in Prince Rupert were excited about getting involved, with nearly everyone in attendance registering to collect signatures.

“Our campaign is to make some sensible first steps in British Columbia. We recognize that B.C. cannot legalize the cultivation and sale of marijuana without some changes to federal law. What we can do as a province is decriminalize possession by telling the police to stop spending any time or resources on searching or arresting anybody for marijuana possession. That’s a sensible first step in the right direction,” he said.

“Ultimately, our goal is to repeal the marijuana prohibition across Canada, but in British Columbia we can start that process and make a very strong both symbolic and practical statement by decriminalizing marijuana possession.”

Since Elections BC gave approval in principal for the law decriminalizing marijuana, Larsen began another province-wide tour to promote the Sensible BC campaign while encouraging supporters to assist by registering as canvassers.

If canvassers can collect 400,000 signatures from across the province between September and November, there will be a referendum to decriminalize marijuana possession in 2014. Ten per cent of registered voters in every riding must sign the petition.

Larsen said he’s pleased with how the process is going so far, with about 1,000 canvassers being registered so far. The campaign hopes to have 6,000 by Sept. 9, when the petition is underway.

People must be registered as a canvasser with Elections BC to collect signatures. Larsen said forms to sign up are available on the campaign’s website, or can be picked up at Homesteader New and Used in Prince Rupert. Supporters will also be able to sign the petition at the business when the time comes.