The federal government’s proposed Cannabis Act (Bill C-45), which is expected to become law in 2018, would, if passed, prohibit all cannabis and related companies (whether they be producers, distributors, accessory providers, etc.) from sponsoring persons, entities, events, activities or facilities. Furthermore, such companies are banned from displaying their names on any sports or cultural venues.

The proposed statute generally mirrors the federal Tobacco Act which largely restricts the promotion of tobacco products. Like the Tobacco Act, the Cannabis Act is expected to prohibit promotion by means of a testimonial or endorsement, false or misleading advertising, sponsorship promotion, lifestyle advertising (which evokes images of glamour, excitement and risk) and advertising appealing to young people.

Accordingly, in line with the impending legislation, City Divisions and Agencies will not entertain any advertising or sponsorship proposals (including offers to raise awareness or educate the public about cannabis) from any cannabis or cannabis-related businesses for any City-owned property, space or asset (including parks, squares, community centres, events, etc.).

May 2018