Consumption spaces are not only important but integral for the development of the recreational cannabis industry, these spaces benefit consumers, budtenders, and licensed producers alike. Consumption spaces provide a safe and regulated environment to host a multitude of cannabis-friendly events, and information sessions or provide just a general sense of belonging within the community.

The lack of these consumption spaces continues to alienate and stigmatize a legal substance, cementing the divide between consumers and non-consumers.

During pre-legalization, Canada’s major cities homed cannabis consumption lounges and even after legalization a few of said consumption spaces have remained open, but face serious charges on a daily basis.

This is unfortunate since the remaining spaces show firsthand how consumption lounges promote harm reduction. One, by shielding those who aren’t interested in being exposed to cannabis, and two, by providing cannabis consumers a safe regulated space to gather and consume without being shamed or fearing being ticketed by a bylaw infraction.

The reason why you aren’t seeing more lounges open to the public is simple: public health officials claim that smoking bylaws stand in the way of cannabis lounges. The issue with the smoking bylaws currently in place categorizes cannabis smoke under the same restrictions as tobacco smoke. However, daily cannabis consumers know that the effects of cannabis (which can improve the overall quality of life) and tobacco couldn’t be more different.

Under smoking restrictions, consumption in public can be especially tricky. For example the general outdoors is acceptable, whereas smoking in an outdoor sheltered area with a roof is prohibited. These restrictions limit events hosted for the recreational industry, forcing event coordinators to seek outdoor locations no matter the time of year. The restrictions in place keep public consumption confusing enough for consumers, budtenders, and even licensed producers not to risk a ticket. There is something very special about lounges, they provide an experience that feels exclusive but includes an entire community, and cannabis consumers deserve legally public consumption spots. Whether the consumption spaces are outdoor gathering places or attached to your favorite dispensary, be sure to seek out and support cannabis consumption lounges to elevate your experience and your community.

About the Author:

Sam (samanthaandreamae) is a freelance writer, budtending for the last two years. noticing the difference between consumer information and industry knowledge, she took to combining two passions; weed and writing. for more ways to incorporate cannabis into your daily life follow the.spinningpen on Instagram.