Justin Trudeau Is Getting Called out Over His Marijuana Legalization Plan

Justin Trudeau has been getting mixed reviews over his party's plan to legalize marijuana nationwide. In particular, reform advocates are frustrated that the law wouldn't grant amnesty to individuals who were convicted of marijuana-related offenses pre-legalization.


That complaint took on a new life Monday after the Canadian prime minister admitted that his father used political connections to get his brother's possession charge dropped.

"We were able to do that because we had resources — my dad had a couple of connections — and we were confident that my little brother wasn’t going to be saddled with a criminal record for life," Trudeau said during a town hall event with Vice. Yet when pressed on the fact that residents convicted of cannabis offenses would still struggle to attain housing or jobs due to their criminal records under the proposed legalization law, Trudeau demurred.

"Our focus is on making sure we're changing the legislation to fix what’s broken about a system that is hurting Canadians," he said, adding that the party would eventually, "take steps to look at what we can do for those people who have criminal records for something that would no longer be criminal."

But that promise has fallen short of many reform advocates' expectations, especially, in light of Trudeau's disclosure about his brother's possession charge.

Nearly 50,000, Canadians faced marijuana possession charges in 2015 alone, The Guardian reported. And the government has recognized that citizens who face such charges "may have difficulty finding employment and housing, and may be prevented from traveling outside Canada."