Ontario resident Stephen Bacon has finally seen an end to a lengthy battle for the custody of his daughter, who he has been barred from seeing ever since he received an exemption to use medical marijuana (See CC#31, Busted Updates). Under direction from the family courts, Bacon was required to undergo psychiatric assessment to determine if his marijuana use made him an unfit father.
“They did their homework in the assessment,” said Bacon. “They actually saw the benefits of marijuana over the pharmaceutical alternatives.”
On May 24, the family courts ruled that Bacon should have his daughter back, but there was still some reservation. During the assessment, says Bacon, psychiatrists asked him if he would be “running around” being a marijuana activist, or if he would be “spending time with his daughter.” Other controversial issues were raised as well.
“It was a big bone of contention whether I would be able to drive with the child,” Bacon explained. “They were concerned about how they were going to judge medical users and their ability to drive motor vehicles. But family court saw that it shouldn’t be an issue. They found that the responsible use of marijuana ? like any other drug, pharmaceutical, or alcohol ? is okay. It is the responsibility of the user not to get impaired and get behind the wheel of a car.”
Still, there have been consequences for Bacon and his daughter that go beyond the months of separation.
“I was called to my child’s school recently. She had an incident with one of the children mouthing off, saying ‘your father is a drug user and marijuana user.’ They had seen her daddy on TV. It really embarrassed my child. I was afraid of exactly this thing? that there might be some kind of schoolyard cruelty.”
Bacon must also undergo a six-month period of supervised access before getting partial custody of his daughter every second weekend.