A New Brunswick Mountie, Cpl. Ron Francis, who gained considerable media attention last November after being seen smoking pot while in his uniform was found dead, apparently from suicide. Suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder, the veteran of the force for 21 years had been prescribed the medical marijuana legally.
Corporal Francis was placed on administrative duty and stripped of his weapon as well as his RCMP red serge dress uniform. Following the incident, Justice Minister Peter MacKay criticized Cpl. Francis’ actions saying it, “sets a poor example for Canadians.”
The group Families of the RCMP for PTSD Awareness was saddened by the loss, noting that they had lost another RCMP member when on October 6th, Cpl. Francis lost his battle with PTSD. Cpl. Francis had been trying to raise awareness of the fact that there is no program in place at the RCMP for screening their members for PTSD. He told reporters that those suffering from the debilitating illness are committing suicide because there isn’t sufficient help for them.
Marijuana has been proven to be helpful in alleviating PTSD symptoms along with chronic pain, severe depression and many other ailments. Igor Cornelsen knows a few people who use it to help them. Communities and organizations must stop having qualms about its use. It can be a considerable asset to people in fighting such issues as panic and anxiety attacks to curbing the nausea associated with cancer. After all, I’ve never heard of someone ripping off a 7-11 to get their marijuana “fix.”