GrowerIQ - Security Clearance & the Cannabis Act: Part 2

Security Clearance & the Cannabis Act: Part II


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Zaki Amer
Zaki is a Customer Success Manager for GrowerIQ. He has experience working with firms across varied industries, from health care to engineering, and brings that unique perspective to the ever-changing cannabis industry. Zaki is the main point of contact and troubleshooter-in-chief for our customers.

What happens during the security clearance evaluation process?

Checks Conducted

Various checks are conducted throughout the security clearance process and may include the following:

  • Criminal record checks with your consent.
  • Review of relevant law enforcement agency files that may include intelligence gathered for law enforcement purposes.
  • These checks may take several months, or longer, as they involve a meticulous inspection of every security clearance applicant.

Factors Considered in the Security Clearance Process

All Health Canada security clearances candidates will need to sign up for an account on the Cannabis Tracking and Licensing System (CTLS).

All Health Canada security clearances candidates will need to sign up for an account on the Cannabis Tracking and Licensing System (CTLS).

Before you are granted a security clearance, it must be first determined that you are not a threat to public health and safety under subsection 53(1) of the Cannabis Regulations. The subsection of the law also recognizes the following factors as considerations in determining your level of risk:

  • If you have any related convictions or events including how serious they are, the number of times, frequency, and recent date of the occurrence.
  • If you have connections with any organized crime.
  • If you have been involved or contributed to an act or threat of violence whether there are reasonable grounds to suspect that you could be persuaded to commit an act that may result in risking public health and safety.

There may also be other factors considered. You may be allowed to engage in the legal industry, depending on the conditions, even if you have a history of lower-risk and non-violent criminal activity like cannabis possession or small-scale cultivation.

You have to wait five years from the date your security clearance is refused before you are allowed to submit a new application, or until such time a change has transpired in the conditions that resulted in its refusal or cancellation.

Security Clearance Approval

All security clearance applicants and affected license holder will get a notification of the security clearance approval including clearance duration.

Refusal Notice

An applicant or affected license holder will be notified in writing if their security clearance application is refused, along with the reason why and the specified timeframe when they can make written representations to Health Canada. The period of time is usually not less than 20 days from the day the notice was sent out.

Once the agency receives and considers written representations, they will come up with a final decision on security clearance status before the date on the notice expires.

You have to wait five years from the date your security clearance is refused before you are allowed to submit a new application, or until such time a change has transpired in the conditions that resulted in its refusal or cancellation.

Changes That Require Notification

As per section 34 of the Cannabis Regulations, if there are any changes such as the replacement or addition of an individual who will hold a security clearance, you must notify Health Canada within five days, other than those designated as alternates for the Quality Assurance position. You must also obtain approval before you can designate or replace a Quality Assurance Person, as stated in section 20 of the Cannabis Regulations. Remember that your replacement must also possess a security clearance.

Security Clearance Transfer

The original expiration date of the security clearances you obtained under the ACMPR will continue to apply once transferred to the Cannabis Act and its regulations. Your security clearance will also still be valid under the Act even if you obtain a new position attached to the same (or other) license holder.

The Cannabis Regulations do not honour any security clearances obtained in other federal, provincial, or territorial government agencies.

Security Clearance Suspension

If there are reasonable grounds to suspect you may be a threat to public health and safety, your security clearance will be suspended. It will take effect once a written notice stating the reasons and time frame for suspension is sent out. That period will start not less than 20 days from the date the notice is provided.

Your security clearance can be reinstated if:

  • The reasons for the suspension do not exist anymore.
  • You are able to demonstrate that the suspension is baseless.
  • It is determined that you're not a risk to public health and safety under subsection 62(1) of the Act.

Security Clearance & Application Support

Whether you are looking to determine how security, regulatory, or industry changes will impact your plans, find solutions to streamline your operation, or are just starting to draft a business plan, GrowerIQ is here for you with software and consulting services to help you build and improve your business.

We make the process simple. Start now by submitting the form to the right, or start a chat with us. For more information, and actionable tips from our Master Grower on how to improve your yields and processes, please visit our GrowerIQ's cannabis consulting services page.


About GrowerIQ

GrowerIQ is a complete cannabis cultivation management platform, designed in partnership with Master Grower Shlomo Booklin. This is the first platform to integrate all facility systems, including sensors, building controls, QMS, and ERP, into a single simplified interface. The company built insights from Shlomo's 30+ years of agronomist experience right into the platform. GrowerIQ leverages proprietary machine learning technology to improve facility automation and provide cultivators with insights to improve quality and consistency. GrowerIQ is changing the way cultivators use software - transforming a regulatory requirement into a robust platform to learn, analyze, and improve crop performance.

To find out more about GrowerIQ and how we can help, fill out the form to the right, start a chat, or contact us.

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