Should Canada Decriminalize All Drugs?

This is a bold question to ask – one that most people will have very strong opinions on. Some of these opinions will be for, but it will be no surprise to see that most of these opinions will, more than likely, be against.

And can you blame people? To say all drugs, as if it were so simple to group every drug out there in the same category; as if they were equals; as if they were produced with the same “ingredients” and had the same effects as one another. This could not be further from true.

There is such a variety in the drugs available that answering the question of whether Canada should decriminalize all drugs or should be a very difficult one to answer.

To help you form an educated and informed opinion on the topic, we’ve decided to provide you with some general information on drugs and to highlight both the potential pros and cons a law like this could provide our country with.

What Is “All Drugs”?

We aren’t going to sit here and go over every drug available out there – that would take forever – but we can give you a glimpse at the types of substances that would be legalized under such a movement as the one being discussed.

As we inferred earlier – not all drugs are the same. Not even close. To give you a better idea of how different certain drugs are from one another, we have outlined a few drug categories and the most commonly used type of drugs from each below.

  • Cannabinoids

The most commonly used cannabinoids are marijuana and hashish. In fact, Canada actually recently passed a bill legalizing the growth and use of cannabis and cannabis products.

  • Opioids

Heroin and Opium are the two most popular opioids used today.

  • Stimulants

When it comes to stimulants, cocaine and methamphetamine are the most common.

  • Club Drugs

If you are looking for a club drug, MDMA is most likely what you will find, as it is the most commonly used club drug available.

  • Dissociative Drugs

This category in itself is less common that most of the others, but ketamine and PCP are the most common within this category.

  • Hallucinogens

It shouldn’t come as a surprise that LSD is the most popular hallucinogen available. Some things never change.

Who Is Pushing For Drug Decriminalization in Canada?

It may come as another shock for many to discover that, rather than it being a radicalized group of drug-loving hippies who are pushing for this decriminalization, it is actually the Toronto Health Board.

That’s right – a group of highly educated and well researched medical professionals.

In fact, not only is the board “on board” with the notion of decriminalizing all drugs, but, when it was put to a vote, the vote was unanimously in favour of pushing Ottawa to consider the movement.

How Would Canada Benefit

The main idea behind decriminalizing all drugs, according to various members of the Toronto Health Board, is to save lives.

According to Dr. Eileen de Villa, who happens to be the leader of the Board and Toronto’s own Medical Officer of Health, the way to do this is to use a corrective approach with those struggling from substance abuse, rather than a criminal approach.

She believes that decriminalizing drugs may very well cause a decline in the harmful ways in which such substances are used, which is a theory she can comfortably back up with her own medical research. Her research clearly shows that the harm associated with certain substances only intensifies when people are made to obtain such substances illegally.

In this case, not only would legalizing these substances essentially make them less harmful, but it would create a society where, rather than being punished, someone with a drug problem would instead be treated medically in an attempt to clean them up.

If it were to work like such, decriminalizing all drugs could help to keep society sober.

Not to mention the reverse psychology aspect of this whole situation: for many, drugs are appealing because of their illegal nature. If the country were to go and legalize them all, perhaps the desire these individuals feel for such substances would fade.

What Could Go Wrong

Of course, as much as we would like to think that legalization all drugs would bring about all of these benefits, there is still the chance that it would have little impact on current drug usage, or even that it could make it worse.

If people had easier access to drugs and no longer had to fear facing legal troubles for possessing or using such drugs, they may just be more inclined to do so.

Tell Us What You Think!

Drugs are an extremely controversial topic and always have been. Most people have strong opinions regarding drugs and drug use, whether positive or negative. To ask whether or not Canada should decriminalize all drugs is a tough one to answer.

After taking into consideration both the pros and cons of the potential decriminalization of all drugs, what are your thoughts on the subject? Do you think Canada should legalize all drugs, or do you think that it is crazy to even consider such a thing, and why?

We’d love to hear from you!



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