Liberals Pass Bill to Suspend Records for Simple Cannabis Possession

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The Liberal government’s Bill C-93, offering free record suspension but not expungement of cannabis possession convictions, received 11 amendments as it passed through the House of Commons public safety committee.

The amendments reflected a variety of concerns about the legislation from all parties, including those from Liberals, Conservative, NDP, and Green MPs.

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Among the amendments, there was a guarantee that those who have not paid off fines related to cannabis convictions can nonetheless receive record suspensions—a protection for cannabis pardons—even if the person in question is later convicted of a cannabis possession offence.

There’s also a promise that all people convicted of possession will be able to receive record suspensions. Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale, who sponsored the bill, also has amendments of his own.

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As it stands, the bill is still on track to make it to the Senate this week—which is a good thing, considering the number of naysayers who’ve predicted it will die before the summer and become abandoned by the fall election.