Tax and licensing issues standing in the way of Indigenous cannabis entrepreneurs

Grand Chief Abram Benedict

By Giuseppe Valiante THE CANADIAN PRESS AKWESASNE, Ont.- Lewis Mitchell, a former police chief on the Mohawk territory of Akwesasne, chuckled when asked if he thought he would have trouble finding customers when his first batch of cannabis is ready for sale around summertime. “No, not at all,’’ the president of Seven Leaf said at his company’s production facility along the St. Lawrence River, about 130 kilometres southwest of Montreal. They just won’t be in his own community, at least not for now. It has been six months since the federal Liberal government legalized marijuana in Canada, leaving it up to the provinces to manage sale and distribution. First Nations people have jumped in on the action, but reserve politics and jurisdictional issues have complicated legalization in Indigenous communities. Akwesasne…

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