Former Maple Ridge councillor Craig Speirs is organizing a petition seeking a referendum to decriminalize possession of marijuana in B.C.
A group of local volunteers have committed to collecting the names of at least 10 per cent of voters to push the government to hold a referendum on the topic.
"I think it's absolutely ridiculous to give someone a criminal record for the possession of pot," Speirs said, which he calls "innocuous."
Speirs said he has been smoking marijuana since the 1970s, and he compares it to having a beer or glass of wine at the end of the day.
Speirs said he has a "relationship" with his grower, so he knows what he is getting.
"My understanding is the majority of growers are mom-and-pop [organizations], Speirs said. He added that any danger around marijuana comes from the fact that it is illegal.
The kickoff for the petition is Sept. 9. The group will have 90 days to collect signatures.
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