Canada just legalized marijuana nationwide.
In a historic vote on Tuesday, the Senate approved Bill C-45. Also known as the Cannabis Act, Bill C-45 legalizes weed possession and sales for adults, and allows up to four marijuana plants per household. The bill previously passed in the House of Commons.
Like statewide legalization in the United States, it’ll be a while before people can just walk into a shop and order up a nice eighth. Each province is implementing different aspects of the bill in the next 8 to 12 weeks — while the federal government has jurisdiction over parts like illegal sales to minors and assigning licenses to growers, it’s up to the provinces to manage retail sales and distribution laws.
Adults will be allowed to possess up to 30 grams of marijuana, and products will be sold in plain packaging with labels that are clearly marked.
Provincial governments can also establish stricter rules like limiting home growth. Three provinces have already expressed plans to ban home growth altogether, according to CBC.
Canada’s federal government started the arduous journey to legalization in April 2017. In a press release, the government of Canada admitted that “the current approach to cannabis does not work.”
“It has allowed criminals and organized crime to profit, while failing to keep cannabis out of the hands of Canadian youth,” the statement said. “In many cases, it is easier for our kids to buy cannabis than cigarettes.”
Justin Trudeau tweeted that because it’s too easy for kids to buy weed, “criminals reap the profits.”
The Canadian government planned for retail sales to start in the beginning of July, but the start date was pushed because the Senate required more time to review the bill. Now that it’s passed through both houses of Parliament, Trudeau has to decide the date when legalization is official.
Senator Tony Dean, who sponsored the Cannabis Act, called the legislation’s passing “transformative social policy.”
“A brave move on the part of the government,” he told CBC.
Canada is the second country behind Uruguay to legalize cannabis for adults at the national level. Currently, nine states and Washington D.C. have legalized cannabis for adults in some form in The United States, but marijuana remains illegal under federal law.
President Donald Trump has previously hinted that he would support an effort to end the federal ban on marijuana.