STOP BILL C-15! Mandatory Minimums Pass House With Support of Liberals

CANNABIS CULTURE – Controversial drug bill C-15, which includes mandatory minimum jail sentences for small amounts of marijuana, passed the Canadian House of Commons with the support of both Liberal and Conservative parties. The bill now moves to the Senate for a final vote.

Health experts and activists criticized the bill for including mandatory sentences, which have been proven ineffective and destructive time and again in studies.

Despite a backlash from the NDP and some Liberal members in the days before the final vote, the majority of Liberals supported the bill, which passed with a vote of 194 to 54. The bill needs only Senate support to become law.

“I think it is really bad news,” Libby Davies, MP for Vancouver East (NDP), told Cannabis Culture, “the evidence shows very, very strongly – overwhelmingly – that mandatory minimum sentencing is not an effective policy when it comes to drug crime. My fear is that we are going to see more people in jail, and more people fighting charges because they know they will be facing a mandatory minimum sentence. That means more court time and more backlogs.”

With Canada’s prison system already overstretched to the breaking point, experts say the bill could create a create a dangerous influx of new inmates.

“We are now going down a path the Americans went down 25 years ago,” said Kirk Tousaw, a criminal lawyer and executive director of the Beyond Prohibition Foundation. “A path they are now abandoning because of the incredible devastation that these kinds of sentences have caused to their criminal justice system and to the social fabric of their communities.”

If passed, the bill would enact a number of minimum sentences for drug crimes, including an automatic six month jail term for as few as five plants. The bill has been lambasted for targeting first time drug offenders and small-time dealers and users, instead of focusing on high-level producers and distributors.

“Mid and upper-level traffickers will get no particular increase in punishment, because a major dealer would already get six months or a year for any kind of trafficking,” said Vancouver marijuana activist (and CC editor) Marc Emery. “What we’re going to see is people who wouldn’t normally go to jail, they’re going to be the people affected. Largely young people in schoolyards – because if you are dealing around a school, it’s an enhanced penalty. The enhanced penalties of six months, a year, two years, are going to affect, almost exclusively, people under the age of twenty-five.”

If passed, the bill will undoubtedly fill Canada’s already overtaxed prison system with non-violent offenders, and demand more police for proper enforcement.

How To Stop Bill C-15!

Please call or email your Senators and tell them to vote NO! on BILL C-15

Click here for a list of all Canadian Senators – click names for contact info.

WhyProhibition has added emailers for each Province, simply click on your Province or Territory of to email your Senators to demand they vote No on C-15.

If your province or Territory isn’t listed, it means we don’t have any members from your area! Login or Register and get your friends to do the same, we want to have every City, Electoral District, Region, Territory and Province represented before the next election!

Prince Edward Island

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Nova Scotia

British Columbia

Updated on June 10, 2009



  1. Anonymous on

    Man, I feel for all Canadians. I am from the US, and I have seen firsthand what mandatory minimums have done to this society. Whole families have been destroyed by locking up these supposed ‘dangerous criminals’ (Pot smokers) for years on end. Not only have their families become dysfunctional, but the inmates themselves have suffered starvation, insanity, sexual exploitation, robbery, and state-sanctioned drug dependency; not to mention the stigma they carry when they are released back into society. They can’t even get a decent job here, because they have been convicted of the heinous felony of possessing marijuana!

    I urge you, Canada, don’t let this insane travesty of justice occur in your great country. Don’t just give it lip service either…if you don’t get truly active, it won’t accomplish a thing. Because, yes! there are some really greedy and ruthless people in the US making more money than God by running these prisons. How you say? They pay the government ‘incentives’ to allow them to run these prisons! (Read Kick-backs!)

    I urge you, don’t copy the United States disastrous mistakes.

    –a former convict from the United States–

  2. HardTalk on

    Harper is a tool of the Zionist Mafia. Take your country back Canada, quit allowing these bastards to subvert your entire democracy.

    I can assure you that if Harper did not to support War Of Terror ( War For Israel ), he would not be in power. The only way this man can get away with destroying the progressive spirit of Canada is with the help of those self serving bastards.

  3. Nike Air Max 90 on

    Nice post,nice sharing.Thanks.

  4. Anonymous on

    clearly ur a yank or ur a complete fuckin fool if we throw every person in jail for 6months to 5years for a fuckin joint wich is what is basicly propoused.we will end up just like the states with over flowing prisons systems and childerns parents aunts uncles brothers and sisters being tossed out of thier lives over some weed if u or anyone else agrees u need ur fuckin head examined no one any where should go to jail over a plant that grows wild and is not refined by man in any way the only thing that will come from this bill is more violence thats it and any one who dosent see that mayby they should lite one up u are part of the closed mined idiots that have skrewed the canadian people and are slowly making this a police state so to you and all your like minded slaves DOWN WITH THE OPPRESSERS AND UP WITH THE SMOKE

  5. justsayno on

    About bloody time this law comes to pass. You should all forget the idea that a person with small amount of weed will go to jail. Stop looking at it as the poor pot head going in the slam for minor possession, its not going to happen. If any of you truly read the bill, you would clearly see that it’s directed towards the drug dealers, producers and importers of the drugs. There is no mention in any of the amendement for minor possession.
    Give it a rest with the smoke filled goggles of minor drug possession as not being a crime, guess what?…it is!!!
    try spending more time looking into the corelation of drug crimes and gang violence, you will see its related and marihuana plays a huge part in it.

  6. Anonymous on

    I was thinking the exact same thing regarding the number of plants being grown. If a mandatory minimum means the judge has no discretion and absolutely must impose the 6 month sentence, then why not follow the Paragraph 7, 2(b) and just grow as many as you possibly can up until the magic number 200. Our politicians really can’t think this through?

    Punish the little guy while organized crime growing their shitty, nauseating quick strains gets empowered. Ya…this really sounds like the Canada I thought we had the potential to become…

    I hope our senators will show up to vote for this one. I bet all the recently appointed conservative cronies have been already told how to vote. Even the illiterate one.

  7. Moving to Boston on

    It’s sad that the US is finally learning from their mistakes and making some rational decisions in this department, and Canada is somehow getting worse and worse. If their goal is to make living here severely less desirable, then they’ve succeeded.

  8. Anonymous on

    I respect all those who repeatedly bring up the fact that mandatory jail sentencing has not worked in other countries, such as the USA. Steven Harper and all the other Canadian government officials who support this bill know this as well. What Canadian citizens need to ask is “if our government knows that laws like this don’t work effectively then WHY are they supporting it?”
    What exactly does more people in jail mean for Harper? Fuller jails = more tax dollars?
    WHO is Harper in bed with…did anyone ever think that Harper wants privatized prisons? People are getting rich in the USA off of them.

  9. Aaron on

    I’m so sick of the PC government, they have been making life in canada worse and worse, Harper want’s to make canada new USA, now I used to think the Liberal party was a little smarter then them, but what the fuck dude, even teh Liberals went along with this crap, I’m so pissed off

  10. AnonymousAgain on

    I mean, even if I grow one plant and decide to commune with somebody, passing them a joint to share, then I am doing “traffic” activity.

    Hmmm…no freedom to choose…no freedom to assemble…sounds pretty fascist to me…

  11. Anonymous on

    It’s extremely arbitrary and it might as well be one plant…most people take more than five cuttings/clones from any variety of plant to ensure the successful rooting of at least one plant. When starting with cannabis seeds, most end up being male, therefore individuals are practically required to have more than five seedlings to ensure one female plant. The cannabis sentences contained in Bill C-15 are designed to find everyone guilty.

  12. Anonymous on

    Don’t forget that this amendment from 1 plant to 5 as the minimum to invoke a 6 month sentence is an illusory difference, as all clones one makes are counted as full blown plants.

    Lots of people would pick the best of a bunch to grow out, and toss the rest, but they all count if found.

    One thing I wonder, is that if the penalty for 5-200 plants is the same, assuming that more time wasn’t assigned by the judge, then why not grow 199????

  13. Anonymous on

    In Canada, only the Liberals and the “conservatives” (reform/alliance/bigots) have a ghost of a chance at earning a federal minority government.

    On this issue, we see that the “conservatives” are acting true to form, trying to place themselves as Big Brother type overlords invading every aspect of a person’s life they don’t agree with ideologically.

    We see the Liberals as a weak-kneed party of pussies that have no itegrity or adherence to any guiding principals as long as they feel they are behind in the polls.

    So, how the hell can we vote them out of our lives? Either choice is the same old shit for us.

  14. Anonymous on

    I am sending a letter to all my provincial senators, but I feel this will be a useless action and that our political parties universal care only for securing power for their own sake, without thought of social effect or the scientific studies made of the many years this issue has affected our society.

    I believe the “war on drugs” has done far more damage to the people than the drugs themselves would create if legalized, but I also believe that our current administration puppets policies from the tyrannical DEA, who also seek to hold on to their powers and budgets by promoting it. After all, what would they do with all those tin star bullies if they couldn’t bust down the peaceful pot growers doors and flex their muscle?

    No, there is far too much profit to the “drug warriors” for them to ever allow an garden of a dozen plants, as much of a threat as tomatoes that could grow beside them, to be had by a peaceful citizen without wondering when the self-righteous cowboys will come riding in to take said citizen off to jail.

    Get ready for more privitized prisons, because there isn’t any room as it is.

    This “drug treatment court” idea is terrible. So of course I’d pick it over going to jail, and I have to listen to a pompous anti-marijuana type tell me how bad my use is for me, and I have to pretend to believe it or else go away.

    I use marijuana to control depression. I have experience with several meds, and reject them all as inferior for me, though I am sure no doctor would risk agreement.

    If this passes, and down the road I face these charges, which is a distinct possibility, then I will seriously consider ending the misery that I will face as a member of a heavily persecuted subculture deprived of the right to grow my own medicinal plant.

    Again, I am sending the letter, and putting my name on it (which I believe to be foolish and only an invitation for further prosecution, but I will proceed regardless), but I believe this matter has already been settled in the backrooms, and our “leaders” don’t give a fuck about any of us, outside of our illusory “freedom” to choose liberal or conservative federal governments and contributions as wage slaves to our mismanaged public taxation funds, and they’ll pass this into law in short order.

    I have been telling people since the “conservatives” got into power that they would do this, but people laughed me off. Now we see what kind of people we are dealing with. With a vote like this, any line between the liberal and conservative parties seems hopelessly blurred to me, and our great country is about to go down even further into a big brother police state with an industrialized prison slave labour force while violence increases dramatically.

    Get ready to pay $500/oz. Get ready for the violent gangs to get interested in marijuana more as its cost increases. Get ready for bullied non-violent kids sacrificed through threat of violence to them and their families as mules to sit in grow houses and tend to plants, going off to jail while the profits go to their oppressors.

    This will blow up into politician’s faces, when the general public takes notice after it is way too late (I would have never known this latest news if I hadn’t come by this web site today), but hye, as long as they cash their cheques and get reelected, then who cares, right? Rip off another fat check to prohibitionist thugs, take their homes away and sell them for profit, and laugh your ass off on your way to a six figure retirement pension.

    Sounds crazy? It already happens…

  15. Pissed Off on

    I can’t believe I’ve supported those shyster Liberals in the past. If they help enable the passage of this bill, with atrocious, draconian cannabis-related sentences intact; knowing full well that cannabis is a non-toxic, non-carcinogenic, non-addictive plant that is considerably safer than aspirin – they can expect four less votes.

  16. Anonymous on

    Industrial hemp and marijuana are both classified by taxonomists as Cannabis sativa, a species with hundreds of varieties. C. sativa is a member of the mulberry family. Industrial hemp is bred to maximize fiber, seed and/or oil, while marijuana varieties seek to maximize THC (delta 9 tetrahydrocannabinol, the primary psychoactive ingredient in marijuana).

    Hemp has been grown for at least the last 12,000 years for fiber (textiles and paper) and food. It has been effectively prohibited in the United States since the 1950s.

    George Washington and Thomas Jefferson both grew hemp.
    Ben Franklin owned a mill that made hemp paper.
    Jefferson drafted the Declaration of Independence on hemp paper.
    Rudolph Diesel designed his engine to run on hemp oil.
    Kimberly Clark (on the Fortune 500) has a mill in France which produces hemp paper preferred for bibles because it lasts a very long time and doesn’t yellow.

    Hemp was grown commercially (with increasing governmental interference) in the United States until the 1950s. It was doomed by the Marijuana Tax Act of 1937, which placed an extremely high tax on marijuana and made it effectively impossible to grow industrial hemp. While Congress expressly expected the continued production of industrial hemp, the Federal Bureau of Narcotics lumped industrial hemp with marijuana, as it’s successor the US Drug Enforcement Administration, does to this day.

  17. Anonymous on

    Libby Davies is wasting her life trying to defend a lost cause. It’s like David against Goliath. It is not fair.
    I’m mad at her because it always seems she does great things to advance the cause but in the end stupid Conservatives and Liberals alike don’t seem to grasp what the lady has to say.So if she is such a great NDP defender of the drug cause why is it that she always fail to advance the cause in parliament.If you cant produce the results that your boss is hoping for ,then like in every sector of the economy,you should be replaced and Libby Davies has had her butt sitting in the house of commons very long and very few results to show. Just replace her !

  18. Anonymous on

    this is not fair. cannabis is the safest substance on earth how can they keep it illegal. you can overdose on H20 but not on pot go figure.

  19. Anonymous on

    All C-15 will accomplish is to scare a lot of small timers out of growing, leaving it more lucrative for the hardcores. It may even drive the price up. A bunch of really sloppy growers will go to jail, further reducing the competition. Looks like good times ahead for professional growers, thanks dickhead politicians.

  20. Anonymous on

    Fuck you Libby Davies ! I told you over and over again that you are wasting your time and all your supporters time trying to convince blind liberals and blind conservatives
    that C-15 is not the solution. I think you are a prime exemple in Canadian politics of what is meant “by wasting time behind the bench in the house of commons.
    Fuck you all !

  21. SpezDeluxe on

    WTF? Indeed ! Check out or today. The U.S. becomes progressive and compassionate and the True North goes the other way into fascism and criminalization. Wake up Hosers!

  22. FreeSlave on


    The cabal of government and corporations sheds not one tear in the name of the lowly sheeple.

    We are slaves to a system that despises life and all that is sane and good.

    This is hell.

  23. Moody/USA on

    Screw dont fight them, thats what they want..
    They cant keep you from doing that……..

  24. Anonymous on

    Instead of standing up against Harper’s flawed ideology, Ignatieff supports the archaic Bill C 15. When the Liberal Party is so far right of center they vote for the neo-con ideology, it makes Jack Layton look good? You are dealing with some twisted politicians!

  25. Anonymous on

    time for revolution raise a army and put down this corrupt goverment

  26. Buzz Killjoy on

    If the Senate’s composition is roughly the same as it was a few years ago, when it produced a report suggesting that Cannabis should be treated the same as tomatoes, this particularly odious piece of legislation should be dealt a death blow by the “Chamber Of Sober Second Thought”.

    It would surely show the benefits of a Senate that is not beholden to the vagaries of election cycles and other methods of political coercion.

  27. Anonymous on

    Don’t be goaded into any reaction that the moron politicians would love to use to further mesmerize and brainwash the sheeple. Heck, just wait a few short months or so and the US will be in a full swing movement toward legalization. Then you can emigrate to the US seeking political amnesty from an oppressive, socialist regime, i.e. Kanada. Hopefully this is much ado about nothing, and the Senate will nip this nonsense in the bud and tell Harper and his buddies where they can shove this load of Kanadian Krap.

  28. Anonymous on

    One would think they’d have learned from the mistakes made by the United States. Apparently our government has a severe learning disability. Is there a petition for Canadians against Bill C-15, and if so, where can I sign?

  29. Cory on

    Canada has failed to show that they are the peace country. I guess they just want to spend more of our money putting people in jail for marijuana which is a gods creation and was put on this planet for all to seek. I live in canada and i think they making it worse for everyone, all there trying to do is be tuff on crime, but marijuana should not be a crime in the first place!.



  30. Anonymous on

    on second thought no there won’t be any violence. We are the ultimate peaceful movement.

  31. Anonymous on

    No Canadians are just as arrogant and stupid as Americans.
    Better prepare for violence, Pot users will start fighting back.

  32. Adimus on

    A lot of us are smart enough but unfortunately Harper and the Conservatives are not. And apparantly most Liberals are sheep (or enough of them atleast). So its not going too good up here at the moment. I wouldnt mind so much if our gov was copying what the current US gov is doing now (not that that’s particularly good either) but we’re actually copying them from 25 years ago! and after theyve already found out what they did doesnt work! so wtf indeed.

  33. eclecticone on

    To quote Forest Gump…”Stupid is as stupid does”

  34. Broke on

    I thought that Canada was smart and learned from other countries mistakes, I guess not. How stupid can these politians be?? Are they in the back pocket of American companies or government or both? I thought that Canadians was a open and tolerant society, boy was I wrong! Land of the LESS free, like America.