When marijuana was legalized in October 2018, critics wondered, Won’t somebody PLEASE think of the children???
Well, the children are fine. The teens, anyway. According to a study led by St. Thomas University criminology professor Michael Boudreau, Canadian teens are smoking considerably less marijuana these days.
Before legalization, 20% of those aged 15-17 considered themselves daily cannabis users. That number is now just 10%. Meanwhile, cannabis consumption among 18-to-24-year-olds stands at 33%. Only 7% of Canadians overall say they use cannabis daily.
So, what’s the deal with these teens? Is smoking weed not cool anymore now that it’s legal? More likely, it has something to do with awareness.
“They seem to have a pretty good awareness of the harms and research, and people are talking about it now,” said Anna Goodman, a policy analyst with the Canadian Centre on Substance Use and Addiction, in March. Still, it’s too early to draw any meaningful conclusions from the data.
Legalization was meant to achieve two goals: end the black market for marijuana and reduce consumption among minors. We now know there seems to be some progress on the latter. Unless, of course, the teens are lying.