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Current Affairs 2006 - Consequences (30 items)

Dec 30, 2006 Up In Smoke A man suspended from work after testing positive for pot has filed a human rights complaint, claiming his boss refused to let him see the company drug-testing policy. Stephen Shorten, 46, says he suffers from chronic pain and smokes a nightly joint - paired with ibuprofen - to ease the discomfort. His arms were broken after they got caught in a machine at the Layfield textile plant in April, and he only returned to full-time status in October...Over the nearly five years Shorten has worked at Layfield he said the company has turned a blind eye to recreational pot use, so long as staffers showed up for work sober. But in November they beefed up the policy to no longer tolerate pot use of any kind, he said."They never told us of the change. I didn't find out until after all this happened," he told the Sun. ..Shorten doesn't see himself as having a disability, but "didn't expect the company I broke my arms for to be so eager to suspend" him.

[ If this man is denied justice, we are all denied justice...If human value not monetary value ruled, then The Layfield Group stock would plunge when the old policy was scrapped.

Another disturbing trend is the proliferation in US influenced workplace drug testing. The whole concept appears to be a cash cow and income for drug testing companies and their affiliates. It is also a brazen attempt at behaviour modification - steering people toward alcohol, tobacco and pharmaceuticals without repercussions if not impaired, and away from any substance of choice. ]
Dec 13, 2006 The Capital's Drugs Are History: Owner The drug dealers were here, but they're gone now, said Capital Hotel co-owner Maurice Byblow, while sitting in its bar on Monday afternoon. The only problem is, when the dealers left in August, they took more than half of Byblow's business with them.

Dec 12, 2006 6 Kids Seized In Drug Houses Six children have been taken into custody following two marijuana grow op busts in Calgary, their parents set to become the first in the city charged under provincial legislation aimed at protecting kids living in drug homes...."It comes down to organized crime and making profits. They will sacrifice their families to make a profit," said the Ward 13 alderman. "I hope that if these parents are found guilty, that they never get their kids back."

[ Pure evil - the spin that it is heartless criminals making profits, rather than possibly families trying to supplement meager incomes with a bit of extra income so they won't have to live on the street. Either way, tearing families apart for growing plants (that many people are eager to buy) ensures there are emotionally scared victims for life - and we allow these people to rule our lives? Are we insane?]
Nov 28, 2006 Country Going To Pot Today, nearly half a century, legions of narc squads, and several hundred million anti-drug dollars later, pot is being sold by kids, to kids in schoolyards from Pangnirtung to P.E.I. I smell its sweet, sharp scent pretty much every time I walk past the park in the middle of town. So much for the War on Drugs.

Nov 22, 2006 Drug Producer Registry An Idea Worth Pursuing Royal Canadian Mounted Police ( RCMP ) National Chemical Diversion Coordinator, Corporal Brent Hill, recently provided a piece of that puzzle. Speaking to the Perth County Task Force on Crystal Meth, Corp. Hill said he would like to see a national registry created of those found guilty of manufacturing illegal drugs, similar to that used to keep tabs on sex offenders. Such a registry would provide rapid access by police to current vital information about convicted drug producers. A person convicted of a designated drug offence could be required to report to the appropriate registration centre to re-register annually and every time they change their address or legal name....Would the registry differentiate between chemical drug producers and small-scale marijuana growers, and should it? Regardless, this is an idea that shouldn't be allowed to get mired in the legislative system for years. It should be examined fully, post haste.

[Using the extremes of the crystal meth scare as propaganda to snag someone growing a plant in their backyard by making "drug producers" seem the same as someone with an obvious mental defect and unwitting victim, is illogical and hopefully unconstitutional. Also, if registries for real crimes involving victims continues, will there be a drunk driver registry so everyone can know when a convicted drunk driver moves to the neighbourhood? Is this what we want?]
Nov 17, 2006 Project Aims To Zap Grow-Ops Last May, the province amended legislation to the BC Safety Standards Act. BC Hydro is now required to divulge the "name of account holder, civic address, and relevant consumption records for residential homes that meet or exceed 93 kilowatt-hours per day, which is three times the normal consumption rate," according to the staff report. ...The project is expected to be financially self-supported: Revenue generated through fines will offset the cost of additional personnel. ...As it stands, investigations will only be conducted on single family residences.

[Another "tool" to circumvent individual rights - of renters, and now home owners.]
Nov 16, 2006 Big Weed's Distancing Act ....The fact is, while Cannasat Therapeutics celebrates its successes making use of Health Canada's med marijuana program ( it's part owner of the company that holds the feds' sole growing contract ), folks using legally ambiguous compassion clubs live in fear....

Nov 14, 2006 Drug-sniffing Dogs Check Out Renters Property Management Companies, A Car Dealer, Schools, Even Some Parents Hire Canine Detectives To Uncover Narcotics Forty Lower Mainland apartment owners, worried that one of their suites could be the site of an illegal marijuana growing operation, have decided that business has finally gone to the dogs. Sniffers, to be precise. Four of them specially trained to detect the slightest whiff of anything potentially illegal.

Oct 30, 2006 Judge Calls For Stiffer Penalties For Grow-Ops A B.C. Supreme Court judge has waded into the debate over sentencing for marijuana grow-ops, saying sentences are "notorious" for being ineffective. Justice Sherman Hood, who made the comments during the sentencing of a repeat offender in Port Alberni, says the problem in B.C. has become "critical."

Oct 28, 2006 Growhouse Registry En Route Buyers worried about unknowingly purchasing a former marijuana growhouse will soon be able to trace a home's history on a website briefly unveiled by the Calgary Health Region on Friday.

Oct 14, 2006 The Folly Of Anti-drug Laws History is supposed to teach us lessons. But when it comes to drug use and abuse, two professors are arguing we as a society have failed to learn from the past...."The debate hinges far less on the scientific evidence than deep-rooted moral schisms . . . and there's a tremendous financial stake in prohibition. There's a lot of jobs on the line."

Oct 3, 2006 Medical Marijuana Grower Shot During Attempted Theft Pair Posed As Police To Gain Access To House Where Drug Was Grown A man shot during a home invasion is recovering in a Kingston hospital today, while the OPP search for the men who posed as police officers in order to steal his medicinal marijuana.

[When it comes to stealing gardens, it has always been difficult to differentiate between the cops and robbers - what does that say?]
Sep 27, 2006 Golfing Grandpa Gets Teed Off At US Border The 48-year-old construction worker figures he's entered the U.S. by car or plane at least 60 times since the 1970s...All that for a mothballed misdemeanor that was taken care of at the time with a $250 fine...Kimberley swears he's had enough with the U.S.: "Europe is looking really good right now."

Aug 25, 2006 Drug Raid Ruling Upheld Calgary's police chief meted out a "reasonable" punishment to a rookie constable whose mistakes led to a drug raid on the home of an innocent family nearly six years ago, the Law Enforcement Review Board has ruled. In a long-awaited decision, the three-member, quasi-judicial board has ruled Const. Ian Vernon's actions along with others involved in the execution of a search warrant on the home of Nancy Killian Constant and her family in 2000 was not a case of misconduct.

Aug 11, 2006 New Forfeiture Act 'Outrageous End Run' Around Legal As the provincial government gears up to use its new Civil Forfeiture Act, the B.C. Civil Liberties Association is decrying the legislation as an attack on the rights of British Columbians. The law, which came into force April 20, enables the province to seize property, goods or cash deemed by a civil court judge to have been gained illegally or used in the commission of an illegal act. If seized, property such as cars, boats and houses can be liquidated, with the proceeds going to the province....But this bill gives B.C. control over seized assets rather than Ottawa. "This is the province getting their foot in the door on collecting some of these proceeds for themselves," Vonn said.

Aug 9, 2006 Pre-Hiring Drug Tests Under Attack he question of whether an employer can impose pre-employment drug testing and disqualify candidates on the basis of a positive result is one which raises difficult legal questions. The Court relied on logic which says that, through its pre-employment drug testing policy, the employer demonstrated its belief that anyone testing positive is a substance abuser.... On this basis, the Court found the policy to be discriminatory and concluded that employers are not entitled to automatically terminate an employee on the basis of a positive drug test. .... The typical employer would argue that its intention in imposing pre-hiring testing is simply to avoid hiring employees who are users of illegal drugs. The employer would say that individuals who have a recent history of drug use will make poor employees.

Employee drug-testing is part of the "real world" in the USA, and if some have their way, Canadians will live in the same discriminatory world.
Aug 2, 2006 Mother Doping Around Children, Court Hears A 34-YEAR-OLD mother pled guilty last week to possessing cannabis marijuana after she offered a joint to her teenage son and daughter... The Wasaga Beach resident received 18 months probation on a suspended sentence, Tuesday.... "Life can be a little complex," began the judge, adding: "Often choices are made that are inappropriate but so frequently made, so people start to think, 'Hey, there's not a whole lot wrong with this.' "Minors will likely find marijuana without the assistance of their parents," Wilson wrote.

To remove the context of "spousal revenge" rather than geniune concern, if the susbstance in question was legal - alcohol or cigarettes, would the parenting skills still be questioned? Prohibition creates an avenue to persecute and discriminate against 'illicit' drug users so they are always at a disadvantage from those around them. Why are law makers so afraid of a level playing field?
Aug 2, 2006 Marijuana Grower To Forfeit His House A convicted dope grower lost his house and eight months of freedom Tuesday in a sentence the man's defence lawyer promises to appeal.... "It's a necessary appeal," said Jensen. "Who else has been fined $40,000 and sent to jail eight months ( for growing marijuana ) with no criminal record?"

Jul 19, 2006 Publicity Leads To Pot Theft "Let me die in peace" is the message Tom Shapiro wants sent to two teenagers who broke into his Ottawa Street home early Monday morning and demanded he hand over his pot. The Regina man, who has a licence to grow and use marijuana to ease symptoms of AIDS, is now worrying for the safety of himself and his wife due to his advocacy of medical marijuana use. Around 1 a.m. Monday, Shapiro said he was with his wife in their living room when she noticed two teenage boys walking by, pulling up the hoods on their sweatshirts. The pair came up the walk and pulled open the home's locked screen door.

Jul 1, 2006 Crime Stoppers Tip Line Enjoys Banner Year Up to 75 per cent of calls are drug related, involving information about drug trafficking, marijuana grow operations, etc. "We have a lot of repeat tipsters, which shows they have confidence in our program," said Houliston.

Crimestoppers belies our core values to reject betrayal and deceit, in favour of honesty, intergrity and decency, by creating an avenue for people to snitch on one another - not out of indignation or offense to our common good, but to punish someone they have a beef with, or to provide easy money to those who prey on illicit substance users by befriending them, then turning them in.

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