Cannabis and MRU
Policies, resources and information for students, employees and visitors
Recreational cannabis is legal in Canada as of Wednesday, Oct. 17. In Alberta, if you’re 18 or older you can buy cannabis from stores and online. Currently, the municipal bylaw in Calgary doesn’t allow for public consumption. Universities are considered public spaces, so Mount Royal must follow local bylaws. This means no smoking, vaping or consuming cannabis on campus.
To learn more about Mount Royal’s policies, the risks of using cannabis and where to find additional resources, please visit the links below. As well, Wellness Services is hosting a Curious About Cannabis information session on Tuesday, Oct. 23 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Ideas Visualization Lounge in the Riddell Library and Learning Centre. The session will be open to all and have a variety of speakers and information tables.
This is new territory for everyone — governments, workplaces, universities and post-secondary students. Because we’re learning, approaches may change over time.
Curious about Cannabis info session in the event calendar (scroll down to Oct. 23)
Cannabis legalization: City of Calgary approach
Last updated on Thurs., Dec. 20 at 10 a.m.
Will there be any information sessions on campus?
Yes, on Tuesday, Oct. 23 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Wellness Services is hosting Curious about Cannabis in the Ideas Visualization Lounge in the Riddell Library and Learning Centre. There will be a variety of speakers, as well as information tables. This session is open to everyone. More details can be found on the event calendar.
Why are you not allowing smoking, vaping or edible cannabis on campus?
As Mount Royal is considered a public space, we must follow local bylaws. These currently don’t permit smoking, vaping or other consumption of cannabis in public spaces in Calgary.
Why are other universities in Alberta allowing cannabis use on campus?
In those cities, the bylaws are different and the universities have decided on policies they believe are in the best interest of their campuses.
If the city bylaws change, will Mount Royal allow smoking, vaping and consumption of cannabis on campus?
This is new territory for everyone — governments, workplaces, universities and students. Approaches may change over time, but it is hard to predict.
In what Mount Royal policy is cannabis consumption covered?
Cannabis consumption is addressed through the revised Smoking Policy, approved by the Board of Governors on October 13, 2018, in anticipation of the federal government’s Cannabis Act coming into effect.
Is it true that a cross-campus committee was going to allow consumption on campus?
What kind of enforcement will there be on campus?
What about medicinal cannabis?
Guidelines for the use of medical cannabis on campus have not changed.
Does MRU support cannabis use?
Just like with alcohol, MRU is neutral. The University’s focus is to provide information so users understand the risks.
Will cannabis be advertised on campus?
No, we don’t see a role for the University in promoting cannabis.
Will cannabis be sold on campus?
Current legislation does not allow for it, nor do we see this is as a role for the University.
Will students in Residence be able to smoke or grow cannabis?
Students will not be allowed to smoke or grow cannabis in Residence units or common areas. The reason is that smoking creates unwanted odours. Vaping affects non-users with odour and second-hand vapour. A minimum $200 fine will be charged if students smoke or grow cannabis in Residence. Medicinal use of cannabis is permitted in designated smoking areas on campus and on Residence property in areas that do not impact others. Cannabis items can be stored, but not used, indoors. Residence Life Staff are available to provide support and/or resources.
Can students and staff possess cannabis on campus?
Yes, as long as they are at least 18 and the quantity is consistent with the law.
If I seek resources and counselling on campus, will this information be shared with others, like my parents or my boss?
No, this information will not be shared. All counselling services, whether for students or employees, are confidential.
Can I smoke, vape or consume cannabis during field schools?
Students in field studies or excursions follow the laws of the region they’re visiting and related to the activities being done. The leader of the field study or excursion may put rules in place for participation in the program, so it’s best to ask in advance.
What if a student is high during class or other academic activities?
If a student is obviously impaired, just like with alcohol or other controlled substances, Mount Royal with respond using the Student Code of Conduct. For tasks that are safety sensitive, students must be fit to learn.
What if an employee (faculty, staff, management or exempt) is high at work?
If an employee is obviously impaired, just like with alcohol or other controlled substances, Mount Royal will respond using workplace policies such as the Code of Conduct and Environment, Health and Safety. For tasks that are safety sensitive, employees must be fit to work.
What are the main things I should consider to reduce the risks from using cannabis?
Wellness is using Canada’s Lower-Risk Cannabis Use Guidelines messages, below, to reduce risks.
- Non-smoking methods, such as vaporizing or edibles, limit respiratory risks
- Choose products that have a high CBD-to-THC ratio to reduce the risks of mental health impacts and dependence
- Limit consumption to occasional use, such as weekends or one day per week, to reduce negative social and health outcomes
- Avoid synthetic cannabis products, such as K2 or Spice, which can cause severe adverse health effects, including death
Avoid use if:
- Engaging in activities that require your attention (work, school, driving)
- Using other substances (including alcohol or tobacco)
- You have a family history of psychosis or substance-use disorders
The best way to prevent the risks associated with cannabis use is to avoid use altogether.
What is the Students’ Association of Mount Royal University (SAMRU) doing?
Please read this Summit article to learn about SAMRU’s position.
Will Mount Royal apply for a designated use area on campus?
It’s very early on, both in how the application process works at the City and in our knowledge of how legalization of cannabis will impact students and employees. It’s possible our approach may change over time, but we have not made an application for an exception at this time.
Will Cougars student-athletes be able to consume cannabis now?
Are there any academic or employment areas that will not permit use of cannabis at all, even if you are not obviously impaired?
It is best that you check with your instructor or manager to get this answer, because there are some safety-sensitive activities that require students and employees consume no alcohol or cannabis of any kind. Smoking tobacco and consuming cannabis are not permitted at the Springbank Aviation campus.
For those not permitted to consume cannabis at all, is there random drug testing?
Cougars student-athletes follow Canadian Centre for Ethics in Sport rules and regulations which permit testing at any time, either random or targeted. We are not aware of any other areas impacted by random drug testing.