Marijuana plants grow at LifeLine Labs in Cottage Grove, Minn., in 2015. The looming deadline for legalized marijuana has local governments in British Columbia crafting wish lists for provincial legislation, from where pot should be grown to how it should be sold. File photo by THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

Health ministers to talk cannabis, opioids

Health ministers set to discuss cannabis and opioids during two-day meeting in Edmonton

Canada’s health ministers kick off a two-day meeting in Edmonton today, and topics on the agenda include the ongoing opioid crisis and the pending legalization of cannabis.

Deaths from opioid abuse are expected to surpass 3,000 this year, and the ministers say they need to compare notes on what is working and not working.

Related: Growing marijuana industry sparks new research around cannabis: scientists

Federal Health Minister Ginette Petipas Taylor will join them on Friday to deliver an update on plans to legalize recreational use of cannabis by July 1.

The federal government has set 18 as the minimum legal age, although provinces can set the age higher.

Some ministers say they are concerned, given that studies suggest cannabis can impact brain development in youth and legalizing marijuana can lead to more youth taking up smoking.

Related: Marijuana rules will be ‘a work in progress’

The ministers will also meet with Indigenous leaders, as well as discuss prescription drug reform and a national pharmacare program.

The Canadian Press

Just Posted

WATCH: Red Deer’s Westerner Days kicks off to a smoking hot start

Thousands take in the food, entertainment, rides and more at Westerner Park

WATCH: 2018 Westerner Days Parade brings 1000s to downtown Red Deer

The parade begins five days of western fun and culture in Central Alberta

Innisfail RCMP seize eight dogs from hotel room following earlier arrest

Dogs were in distress and taken to an animal rescue organization

Westerner Days opens today

Lots to see and do for the whole family

RCMP Major Crimes South make arrest in Red Deer homicide investigation

Gabriel Juma We Agotic of Red Deer arrested in Calgary

WATCH: Tune into What’s Up Wednesday

An overview of the week’s news in Red Deer

Two charged near Sundre after dog, cat, horse and five lambs stolen

Witnesses give valuable information to police, stolen property recovered

Parks Canada looks to shine light on cloudy future for historic sites

A plan is in place to produce 10-year plans designed to turn around sagging attendance figures

Ontario police say attack on Muslim man was motivated by hate

Two men, aged 27 and 19, have been charged with assault in the incident

Price no guarantee for safety with horse riding helmets: new report

A Swedish insurance report reveals that many brands of equestrian helmets do not protect riders as well as they could.

Gord Bamford Charity Golf Classic launches into its second decade

The Gord Bamford Foundation is continuing to support youth supporting charities

VIDEO: Toronto Raptors send DeMar DeRozan to Spurs in colossal NBA trade

Toronto also sent Jakob Poeltl and 2019 first-round pick, gets Kawhi Leonard and Danny Green

Wetaskiwin man facing charges after allegedly impersonating war veteran

Wetaskiwin RCMP lay charges for unlawful use of military uniforms/certificates

Kitten OK after being rescued from underground pipe in B.C.

An adventurous feline has been rescued after getting trapped in an underground pipe in Kamloops, B.C.

Most Read