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More Canadians smoking pot compared to 1985: Statistics Canada

More Canadians smoking pot compared to 1985: Statistics Canada

India Blooms News Service | | 24 Feb 2018, 09:26 am

Ottawa, Feb 24 (IBNS): Consumption of Cannabis has more than doubled among Canadians who are 15 and older, a new Statistics Canada report said.

In the wake of Canada's Liberal government's plans to legalize cannabis later this year, the national statistics agency has been reportedly trying to compile a picture of marijuana use in Canada.

Reportedly Statistics Canada, for the first time, compared nine national household population surveys that touched on cannabis use starting in 1985 to get a sense of long-term trends.

It found cannabis use among Canadians aged 15 years and older went from 5.6 per cent in 1985 to 12.3 per cent in 2015.

But Wednesday's report shows that pot use over the last decade actually has remained stable or decreased among young people.

The report also found differing trends between young men and women.

Reportedly Cannabis use in boys 15 to 17 between 2004 and 2015 remained stable but showed a decreasing trend among women in the same age group.

"We do know from other studies pertaining to youth that factors such as fear of the consequences from parents or from the negative of cannabis itself could have impact on cannabis use for young people," Michelle Rotermann, senior analyst with Statistics Canada's health division was reported to state.

Pot use dipped for both men and women aged 18 to 24 during that same 11-year span, but increased among Canadians 25 and older.

"One of the things that's changing is respondents' attitudes toward cannabis use over time, as well as perhaps their willingness to declare drug use in a survey," said Rotermann.

The results are reportedly based on several national surveys, including the: Canadian Tobacco, Alcohol and Drugs Survey; Canadian Tobacco Use Monitoring Survey and 1985 Health Promotion Survey.

All these surveys reportedly used target populations that included youth and adults in every province and the questions asked were about past-year cannabis use.

The agency mentioned that although  the nine surveys used could reportedly be combined to estimate the evolution of cannabis consumption but are not perfectly comparable as they were designed originally for different needs.

(Reporting by Asha Bajaj, Image: Cannabis/Facebook page