Canada's decision to legalize cannabis in 2018 was a landmark moment, not only for its citizens, but also for the country's Indigenous peoples. While the move towards legalization was a crucial step towards improving Indigenous rights and sovereignty, it is also important to recognize the challenges that have hindered Indigenous communities in the past and continue to do so today.Under Canada's Cannabis Act, the federal government has established a framework for the production, distribution, sale, and possession of cannabis across the country. It is up to each province and territory to decide how they will regulate the sale and distribution of cannabis within their borders. While this has been a positive step towards creating a unified framework for cannabis regulation, it has also left some Indigenous communities feeling left out or forgotten.
The passing of the Cannabis Act has allowed for opportunities for Indigenous people to open up their own cannabis retail stores, which are a crucial step in regaining their sovereignty over the cannabis industry. Several Indigenous-owned stores have already opened up in various provinces and territories across Canada, including Ontario, British Columbia, Saskatchewan, and Alberta. These stores are owned and operated by Indigenous people and provide a space for Indigenous co
mmunities to come together and share their knowledge and experience with cannabis.Not only do these stores provide Indigenous people with a way to generate revenue, but they also provide an opportunity to reclaim their sovereignty and autonomy over the cannabis industry. This is especially important in light of the fact that Indigenous people have been disproportionately impacted by the criminalization of cannabis in the past.
Despite the progress that has been made in the cannabis industry, there is still much work to be done in terms of Indigenous rights and sovereignty. It is important to recognize the need to continue to work towards the inclusion of Indigenous people in the cannabis industry, as well as ensuring that their rights and sovereignty are respected and upheld.By continuing to push for Indigenous rights and sovereignty in the cannabis industry, Indigenous peoples in Canada can unlock the potential of the cannabis industry to benefit their communities. By creating Indigenous-owned cannabis retail stores and providing Indigenous peoples with the opportunity to reclaim their sovereignty, Canada can continue to move towards a more equitable and just cannabis industry.