Health Canada provided medical marihuana testimony Wednesday in my trial that wasn’t overly surprising. Especially considering we had read their affidavit and already asked them the questions we wanted answers to in pre-trial. Obviously the agency isn’t going to state their program is a sham. Instead they tried to present misleading statistics.
According to Health Canada, 37 per cent of people authorized to possess marihuana live in a community less than 5000 people. We know less than five per cent of Canadians live in communities with a population less than 5000 people. While healthcare is floundering in rural Canada, we have badly run medicinal marijuana program capable of licensing an incredible amount of people who live there.
Then again the only metropolitan city Health Canada had in their statistics was Toronto and Montreal. The west always feels ignored, but who knew Vancouver, Calgary and Edmonton had less than a million people residing there. Health Canada has given downtown Toronto residents exactly what they what, no amalgamation. Our fair city has been broken into four sections. Not only did they chunk Scarborough off Toronto, Health Canada removed Agincourt from Scarborough.
That’s a neighbourhood!
Lawyer Paul Lewin drew a line on a map to show 75 per cent of the province of Manitoba had no doctors signings. Health Canada witness stated, “I don’t want to answer that question.” Health Canada was given the piece of evidence an hour before to prepare a statement. The judge was just a little irate with their response. To solve their woe an agreed upon fact will be our Manitoba map.
Health Canada told the court someone else from their office created the stats. The government agency wouldn’t admit their graph that included; moved away, deceased, and retired doctors who have signed declarations was a little misleading.
Health Canada explained they have an amazing website. They are very proud of it. So happy they are with their website, they don’t purchase television, radio, bus(!), advertising to promote the med pot program. While other government departments are bolstering advertising spending, Health Canada medical marihuana program is not. Does a detailer or Health Canada employee go around to doctors to explain the program? No.
The government agency admitted there was a 20 week sometime longer delay in processing applications. Renewals would go much faster if people didn’t move or have their dosage increased. However, as of Jan. 1, 2010, sixteen days before the start of our constitutional arguments, they are back on their service record of eight to ten weeks processing.
Health Canada medical marihuana testimony went no longer than 45 minutes. The quickest of all witnesses. Personally I think our 21 affidavits and four ill people who testified in person did much better. Our two experts also scored a beautiful ten out ten.
We’re firing on all fronts coming into the home stretch. Next Monday and Tuesday is set aside for summations. Then we wait for a ruling.