A Regina City Councillor is hoping to pass a motion that would further restrict where potential marijuana dispensaries could open up.
Administration is suggesting the six pot shops allotted for Regina are not allowed to be open within a block of a school or park, unless it is downtown.
Councillor Bob Hawkins says one block isn’t enough.
“I don’t think that’s sufficient to protect young people, particularly teenagers,” Hawkins says. “In terms of the downtown, the administration proposed that no exclusion zone applies, I think that we need to protect the youth in downtown as much as we need to protect the youth in every other part of the city.”
Hawkins says it still leaves some area for dispensaries to open and better protect Regina’s youth.
“Even with the more severe restrictions, there are a few places downtown that they could open up, a few places that would be outside the buffer zones,” Hawkins says. “But if it comes between a choice between protecting young people and enabling marijuana shops to open up downtown, and that’s what I think the choice is, I’m in favour of protecting young people.”
Hawkins has been vocal in his opinion on cannabis legalization, stating he believes it is a gateway drug and wants to protect Regina’s youth from it’s “harmful” effects, and would rather see it decriminalized rather than legalized and sold openly.