Open Letter To Canadian Health Minister Allan Rock

Canada: PUB LTE: Open Letter To Canadian Health Minister Allan

Pubdate: Sun, 03 Oct 1999
Source: Edmonton Sun (Canada)
Comment: Parenthetical remark by the Sun editor
Section: Letter of the Week
Author: Debra Harper,


On June 26, 1999, a letter was faxed to Calgary police Chief Christine Silverberg requesting a meeting with Universal Compassion Centre ( UCC ) directors to discuss the issue of a medicinal cannabis centre operating in the city. Her “compassionate” response speaks for itself. The police executed a search warrant on Aug. 25 at the residence of Grant Krieger ( a sufferer of multiple sclerosis ) who was growing medicinal herbs.

Grant had publicly declared he was growing cannabis for the UCC since June. The cannabis plants were removed by the police and he was held in custody. As a direct result of his incarceration, Grant is now in frail health. A healthy person detained in jail will generally come out in the same shape they went in. But for an ill person to be in custody because of the medicine they use is definitely a case of cruel and unusual punishment. While in jail, without his medicine, it became necessary for Grant to use a wheelchair. Up until his arrest he was walking without assistance.

Although he is walking again, he is still too weak to leave his home very often. Grant’s body deteriorated within a span of days. So now it is time to tell us the answers. Why does the government bully sick people? What is gained by doing this? Why do people even have to be singled out to apply for a Section 56 exemption? The process is long and difficult and adds further stress to those who are least able to cope with it.

Why is cannabis not reclassified under the new Natural Health Products branch, which was created for herbs and natural medicines? That is what it truthfully is. Rather than being cozy in the Organization of American States, which facilitates this type of drug policy, why are we not relating more to our European roots where decriminalization ( which is the first step toward regulation ) is becoming more common? Why let geography dictate over conscience? Please answer our questions, Mr. Rock. Time ran out for many of our loved ones and time is running out for many more.

Debra Harper Universal Compassion Centre Calgary, AB

( Medicinal marijuana is a smoke screen. )