Drug Alcohol Rev. 2021 Jul 25. doi: 10.1111/dar.13360. Online ahead of print.
INTRODUCTION: This study sought to determine: (i) whether decriminalisation of cannabis use would increase the proportion who would try the drug; and (ii) the proportion who would use more cannabis; and (iii) explore their characteristics.
METHODS: Australian National Drug Strategy Household surveys were used to address (i)-(iii). Significant independent predictors of (i) and (ii) were identified using logistic regression.
RESULTS: An estimated 4.2% of the population aged 14 and over (n = 882 708) who have never tried cannabis before would try it, if use of the drug were made legal, while 2.6% of the population aged 14 and over (537 000) would use more cannabis if its use were made legal. Respondents were more likely to say they would try cannabis if they were male, younger or suffered from a mild, moderate and/or severe level of psychological stress. Respondents were more likely to say they would use more cannabis if they were male, younger, psychologically stressed and not currently frequent users of the drug.
DISCUSSION AND CONCLUSIONS: Decriminalisation of cannabis use is likely to result in an increase in consumption of the drug among young people with mental health problems. If cannabis use is decriminalised, Australian State and Territory Governments should make provision for a possible increase in demand for drug treatment and for public education on the risks associated with frequent/prolonged cannabis use.
Source: ncbi 2