The Chiefs of Ontario are condemning this week’s vote in the Ontario Legislature which gives Royal Assent to Bill 174: Cannabis, Smoke-Free Ontario and Road Safety Statute Law Amendment Act, 2017.

Regional Chief Isadore Day says passing this Bill so quickly has skipped the process of adequate engagement and consultation with First Nation communities.

He adds currently, First Nations are not prepared to deal with all the ramifications of the legalization of recreational cannabis.

Day stresses the governments were asked to delay the legalization of cannabis in Canada and Ontario, to allow First Nations the opportunity to prepare for implementation, but Day says that has been ignored.

Day adds it is extremely disappointing given the fact that Chiefs met with the Premier and Cabinet last month and held specific sessions on cannabis.

Ontario’s cannabis legislation, Bill 174, would regulate everything about the sale of recreational marijuana in the province once legalization takes effect across the country.