Canadians may lose their Nexus pass over legal cannabis consumption

Published Mar 2, 2020 01:00 p.m. ET
iStock / oksanaphoto

The race is on, and legal cannabis seems to be on the horizon for almost every region on the map, but in the meantime, the United States is maintaining some of the strictest laws against it. We have already highlighted some of the problems encountered by unsuspecting Canadians who were assaulted with a barrage of questions surrounding their past cannabis use, many of whom were honest people who were punished for admitting to smoking weed more than 20 years prior.

Now, it seems that the US border control is taking things to a new low, by questioning dual citizens about their use of cannabis in Canada, a region where smoking, vaping, and buying cannabis is completely legal. Some of those who chose to be honest and share their opinion and past with a border control agent are seeing a trend, and it’s happening now more than ever.

The trick

After finding yourself at the US border patrol, on your way home to the states from a business trip in Canada, it’s pretty normal to go through a series of rigorous checks and tests, many of which are designed to catch criminals who are trying to smuggle illicit drugs or animals into the country.

Most of us are ok with this minor inconvenience because it helps us to combat issues that we really prefer not to deal with, but now, this stop in the line is being used against unsuspecting citizens. You might be asked how you feel about weed, whether or not you have ever smoked it, and about the possibility of you buying it while out and about in Canada.

All of these are versions of questions that have been reported by individuals who have experienced discrimination while trying to cross the border into the United States, and at first, they might seem harmless, given the current trend of marijuana legalization around the globe, but there is a hidden plan that we are just learning about now.

The consequence

According to secret instructions that have now been shared with every US border patrol agent, those who admit to cannabis consumption are technically admissible, which means that they should be granted access to the country, but they can still face the repercussions by no longer qualifying for a trusted traveler program like the Nexus card.

Initially, this sensitive document was only intended to be given to supervisors at the US border patrol, but it has since gone viral after an employee leaked the information. It might not be an immediate suspension that travelers should fear, but eventually, every Nexus card needs to be renewed, which requires an interview with both countries’ agencies.

This is where some of the most innocent people are finding out the hard way, that honesty will get you nowhere after having renewal Nexus card applications denied and no reason provided for the life-altering decision other than the fact that these individuals are somehow no longer low-risk travelers. Considering all of them have only one thing in common, it’s pretty easy to see that this discrimination is happening at every border surrounding the United States.

Good people are suffering

If you were to survey the majority of those impacted by this sudden flood of renewal denials, then you would find that most of them are law-abiding citizens with clean criminal records and absolutely no history of cannabis-related crimes.

From every angle, these are normal everyday people who have done nothing wrong other than partake in this newly legal substance, and for many, it’s impacting their ability to conduct business, leading to at least some level of a financial crisis that they could have never predicted, or prepared for.

Important advice for cannabis consumers crossing the US border

This news has led many to wonder what the best choice of action is, and the experts are saying to lie, lie, and then lie some more. Since the activity, these border patrol agents are questioning cannabis consumption which is entirely legal on Canadian soil, and there is absolutely no reason to admit to using or association with cannabis at all.

That is especially true if you require complete access to the United States for either work or pleasure, but that’s not all. Some sources are saying that the only way to stay completely safe is to deny use if questioned and to keep any and all cannabis-related purchases paid for in cash. This is because the government and banks log every single dime that you spend, and this private information is available to some agencies.

So, keep quiet, always pay in cash, and try your best to stay unnoticed during this turbulent time of two major neighboring countries enforcing entirely different laws and ideals.

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