The community took another step toward legal cannabis sales after the Mohawk Council of Kahnawake and Health Canada signed a Memorandum of Understanding recently, which will allow the MCK to proceed with its own rules and regulations on cannabis, its sales and cultivation in the community.
“This MOU is an important step in the ongoing work to create a safe, well-regulated industry within the Territory,” said MCK Chief Tonya Perron, who has been the lead on the cannabis file.
A Memorandum of Understanding, or MOU, is a legally non-binding document that sets parameters for negotiation. It indicates that the parties have reached an understanding and are moving forward. An MOU is a serious declaration that a contract is imminent.
The MOU also contains agreements on cooperation between Health Canada and the Kahnawake Cannabis Control Board in terms of inspections; information-sharing between Health Canada and the Kahnawake Peacekeepers; and Health Canada assistance to the KCCB in acquiring more expertise in terms of the oversight of the cannabis supply chain.
Perron highlighted the information-sharing aspect of the agreement with Health Canada.
“It sets out the terms and conditions that will govern the sharing of information between Health Canada and MCK, as well as between Health Canada and the KCCB, with respect to cannabis cultivation and processing licences,” she said.
The Kahnawake Cannabis Control Law was enacted on December 18, 2018 as a means to protect the community and its young people by restricting access to cannabis and cannabis products, and to deter the cultivation, production and sale of such products within the community, the MCK said.
Since that time the community has moved methodically toward a regulated cannabis market by enacting the KCCB, the MCK said.
Perron added the document allows for the community’s dual licensing policy, which requires permission from both the KCCB and the Health Canada to cultivate and sell cannabis and cannabis products.
Marc Lalonde, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Iori:wase