The federal Cannabis Act came into effect Oct. 17, 2018, legalizing the possession and sale of recreational cannabis in Canada.
UBC’s Office of the University Counsel convened a committee to review and revise UBC Policy 15 – Smoking and Smoking Product Promotion on Campus. A draft of the proposed policy was presented to the People, Community & International Committee of UBC’s Board of Governors (BOG) on September 13, and has been posted online for community consultation. All feedback from the community consultation process will be considered by the policy committee.
This Frequently Asked Questions document is intended to inform students, faculty, and staff what the rules around cannabis possession, use and sale will be on campus once cannabis is legalized across Canada. This document assumes that the proposed policy will be approved without any further amendments. Please note that, following its consideration of the feedback from the community consultation process described in the previous paragraph, the policy committee will make such changes to the proposed policy as it considers appropriate. The revised policy proposal will then be submitted to the Board of Governors for approval, likely in February 2019. This Frequently Asked Questions document will be updated as appropriate at that time.
Q.1 Is there an age limit for cannabis use at the University?
Provincial law prohibits any person under the age of 19 from possessing or consuming cannabis.
Q.2 How much cannabis can a student possess on campus?
An individual on campus may not possess cannabis in amounts that are greater than the amounts set out by federal law, which is the equivalent of 30g of dried cannabis or 450g of cannabis edibles.
Q.3 Can I smoke cannabis on campus?
Smoking of cannabis is prohibited anywhere on the Okanagan campus except in designated smoking gazebos. Please note that not every smoking gazebo on the Okanagan campus permits the smoking of cannabis. Please refer to the signage at the gazebo to ensure cannabis use is permitted at that gazebo.
On the Vancouver campus, smoking of cannabis is prohibited indoors, in bus shelters, in UBC vehicles, and within eight metres of doors and air intakes. Smoking of cannabis is also prohibited anywhere on UBC student residence property1.
Campus and Community Planning is currently working with the Vice-President, Health in order to explore the potential of creating a new No Smoking Area around the health precinct on the Vancouver campus. C&CP will also consider other appropriate areas for designation as No Smoking Areas, such as outdoor athletics facilities.
Q.4 Can I consume cannabis edibles on campus?
There is no general prohibition on the consumption of cannabis edibles on campus. Any such consumption should be done with consideration to other university community members, and the Student Code of Conduct.
Q.5 Can staff consume cannabis during the work day? What are the fit to work guidelines?
UBC has an obligation to observe the safety rules set out in section 4.20 of the Occupational Health and Safety Regulation to prevent impairment in the workplace. This means ensuring that employees do not arrive or remain at work while their ability to work is affected by alcohol, cannabis, or any other impairing substance regardless of its legal status. UBC employees are required to refrain from the use of any impairing substance, including alcohol and cannabis, during or prior to work hours.
Although medical authorization to use cannabis does not include a right to consume cannabis at work or arrive to work impaired, employees who are prescribed cannabis for medical purposes and seek, or require, an accommodation should advise their supervisor. Any unauthorized or unapproved use of cannabis prior to or during work hours will not be tolerated and may result in discipline.
UBC has resources available on substance use in the workplace, at http://www.hr.ubc.ca/administrators/managing-staff/information-for-supervisors-regarding-substance-use/
Q.6 Am I allowed to grow cannabis in my UBC residence unit?
Student residence agreements prohibit the cultivation or possession of cannabis plants in residence units or elsewhere on UBC student residence property1.
Q.7 Can you store cannabis in UBC residence?
Cannabis may be stored in residence in your private space in your bedroom1 as long as all storage containers are clearly labelled as containing cannabis or cannabis product and are stored in such a way as to not create nuisance to other residents.
Q.8 Can students sell cannabis at a “Licensed Event’?
Cannabis sale is prohibited unless it is authorized under federal and provincial law, and, in the case of retail outlets, with a licence issued by Campus and Community Planning on the Vancouver campus, or the City of Kelowna on the Okanagan campus. Neither federal nor provincial law currently contemplates sales that are not in designated brick-and-mortar stores or online. As a result, cannabis sales will not be permitted at any UBC events.
Q.9 Can students share/give away cannabis to friends?
In accordance with federal law, individuals who are over 19 years of age my share or give away cannabis to other individuals who are over 19 years of age, as long as the amount of cannabis given away doesn’t exceed the amount of cannabis that such an individual is allowed to possess (see Q.2).
1 This FAQ provides a general summary of the rules only. Students living in UBC student residences should review the terms of their Residence Agreement to ensure they are compliant with the rules governing cannabis in their residence.