U.S. Customs and Border Protection has updated its rules concerning employees of Canada’s legal marijuana industry, saying they will “generally be admissible” to the United States if the purpose of their travel is unrelated to the industry.
The update, published October 9, brings some clarity to the agency’s earlier statement on the issue from September 21 that said working in the Canada’s marijuana industry “may affect admissibility to the U.S.”
The vague original statement fired confusion and concern among employees of Canada’s budding marijuana industry, who feared they could be banned altogether from visiting the United States.
The updated statement now reads: “A Canadian citizen working in or facilitating the proliferation of the legal marijuana industry in Canada, coming to the U.S. for reasons unrelated to the marijuana industry will generally be admissible to the U.S.”
However, Canadians travelling to the U.S. for a purpose that’s related to the marijuana industry “may be deemed inadmissible,” the revised statement warns.
Canada is set to legalize the recreational use of marijuana on October 17, but the sale, possession, production, distribution and importation of the drug remains illegal under U.S. federal law.
Nine U.S. states have legalized the recreational use of marijuana and 30 states have legalized medical marijuana, but U.S. federal law supersedes state laws.
The updated statement does not say whether Canadians who admit to the recreational use of marijuana will be refused entry to the United States.
It does, however, say that anyone deemed to be a “drug abuser or addict” or who admits to committing acts that violate state, federal or foreign laws regarding controlled substances will be inadmissible to the United States.
For more information on admissibility issues, please send a detailed email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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