Montreal

Quebec challenges court ruling that allowed home cannabis cultivation

Last month, a Quebec Superior Court judge struck down parts of Quebec's cannabis law that banned growing cannabis plants at home. The province is appealing that ruling.

Quebec Superior Court struck down parts of provincial law in September

Quebec's cannabis law, which included a ban on home-growing, was passed in June 2018 under the previous Liberal government. (Ryan Remiorz/The Canadian Press)

The Quebec government is appealing a court ruling that allows the cultivation of cannabis at home.

Last month, Quebec Superior Court Justice Manon Lavoie invalidated two sections of the provincial law that prohibited the cultivation of cannabis at home for personal purposes.

Lavoie said the legislation was unconstitutional because such a ban amounts to criminal legislation, which is under federal jurisdiction.

On Thursday, Lionel Carmant, the province's junior health minister, who oversees cannabis policy, said the government looks at the issue from a public health angle.

He said the concern is that home growing will "normalize" pot consumption.

Premier François Legault also said the government is committed to fighting the decision. He said many building owners are concerned about potential damage to their property from cannabis growing setups.

Legault pointed out that both his own party and the previous Liberal government were opposed to home growing.

"It's the choice of the two main parties at the National Assembly," he said.

Cannabis has been legal in Canada since October 17, 2018. Federal laws allow residents to grow a maximum of four plants at home.

The Coalition Avenir Québec government still plans to amend the law to raise the legal age of consumption from 18 to 21.

With files from Cathy Senay

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