Cannabis Prospect Magazine - February '19 - Issue #1

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respondents located in office buildings that they manage. Participating provinces included British Columbia, Alberta, Ontario, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Newfoundland. When asked about the level of restriction that should be imposed regarding the use of marijuana in and around workplace environments, some of the responses were unexpected. A total of 38% of the respondents believed that marijuana should be strongly restricted in the workplace with zero tolerance for those caught. At the same time 30% believed that marijuana should be moderately or mostly unrestricted at work. This sentiment came as a surprise. Should it be okay to go out for lunch and consume marijuana, similar to having a glass of wine or a beer? This in turn raises potential policy and procedure questions for property managers in terms of where it is acceptable for people to consume cannabis, and whether to follow the same rules that are used for smoking tobacco. Cannabis Retailers in Office Buildings There has been significant discussion regarding the concerns that some people have with recreational cannabis outlets being located too close to schools. The Colliers survey tapped into similar concerns that some in the business community have with cannabis products being marketed or available for sale at retailers within an office building. Many were undecided pending more information on the form that the cannabis retailing would take—would the product be sold at a dispensary, coffee shop, cannabis store or some form of government partnership? At the same time, close to half the people surveyed (49%) believed that selling cannabis products within an office building is either unacceptable or very unacceptable. This could have a significant impact for landlords as they may need to think carefully before leasing space to a retailer in this space. Attitudes by Province - with an Interesting Message from BC What was especially noteworthy however were the attitudes when broken down by province. BC and the Atlantic provinces were most eager to see workplace restrictions, while Alberta was most likely to feel that marijua-

na use at work could be moderately or mostly unrestricted. Additionally, BC was more likely than any other region to feel that retailing cannabis products in an office building was unacceptable—an interesting response given BC’s progressive stance towards cannabis in the past. With the rise of marijuana-related activities (including advertising and merchandise), landlords, commercial property managers and leasing agents need to take into account the sensitivities of occupants in their office buildings. Even though the widely circulated statistic is that seven out of 10 Canadians are in favour of legalization, close to half of office workers we surveyed felt that marijuana products should not be marketed and/or available for sale within their buildings. As we go through this multi-layered change that incorporates national, provincial, municipal and private levels of legalization, we anticipate a learning curve with cannabis users around office properties that will require property managers to have close knowledge of their local situation and potentially act as enforcers/ educators for the overall benefit of all office workers at their properties.



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February 2019 | Cannabis Prospect Magazine