Recreational cannabis use not permitted at Trent University; Fleming College still working on policy
Recreational cannabis use will be legal on Oct. 17, but for students, staff and visitors at Trent University in Peterborough, it won’t be permitted even after it’s legalized.
“Under the Cannabis Act in Ontario, you’re not permitted to consume cannabis in a public place and university campuses are a public place,” said Louise Fish, director of risk management at the university.
If you’re over the age of 19, you can possess it, but not smoke it at the campuses.
“Recreational cannabis will not be permitted on campus. Medicinal cannabis has been legal since 2001, and we will continue to accommodate people with medicinal cannabis needs,” Fish added.
Students are allowed to consume alcohol on campus in their dorm rooms and in designated areas.
“The rule for cannabis is different because it’s smoke based,” Fish added. “All of our campus residences and apartments are smoke free. It’s not permitted those buildings as well.”
Trent University is taking a harm reduction approach to cannabis.
“Our enforcement will be to ask the person to cease consuming cannabis on our property and advise them of the law. If they are persistent, we will issue a Trent University violation notice, which is similar to a parking ticket,” Fish said.
A steering committee is working on updating the university’s smoke-free policy, which currently includes medicinal cannabis. It will be updated by the time cannabis is legal.
Meanwhile, the board of directors at Fleming College is still working on the college’s policy, which should be ready next week.
“It’s going to make sure that we’re following the legislation. We have a very complex setting here. We have a residence, we have public space, we have learning space, we have a workspace. It’s not just a straightforward issue, so we need to be thoughtful of the policy we’re developing,” said Maureen Adamson, college president.