Charity cautions over ‘safe’ legalisation of marijuana

February 9, 2020 by erfa5t8

One in 20 adults would take cannabis on a regular basis if it were legalised, similar to the number of people who currently utilize it, according to a survey for a leading mental health charity.

A YouGov survey carried out for Rethink Mental disorder found that 5% of all UK adults would take cannabis a minimum of once a month or more if it were legal. This increases to almost 10% for individuals aged in between 25 and 44. In overall around 2.7 million UK adults would use the drug regularly.

These findings recommend little would change in the use of marijuana if legalisation were introduced.

Newest figures from the Criminal activity Survey for England and Wales expose that 7.6% of grownups, aged 16 to 59, took cannabis in the last year – 2.6 million people. Reconsider, which has actually long raised concerns about the links between cannabis usage and psychosis, now thinks the existing law criminalising the drug is not working.

It acknowledges that the UK may, in time, follow other nations in introducing legalised cannabis however it desires politicians to think about the effects of this on people most susceptible to psychosis– those aged 16 to 25 and individuals with a mental health illness.

Reconsider says that while it identifies there are “strong arguments for a modification in the law”, it wants to see a more concerted effort to figure out if the general level of public damage would increase if cannabis were legalised.

A cannabis plant. The Crime Survey for England and Wales found that 2.6 million UK adults used cannabis last year.


Pinterest The Criminal Offense Survey for England and Wales found that 2.6 million UK grownups used cannabis in 2015. Picture: Richard Vogel/AP

” We identify the problems with the existing law,” stated Brian Dow, Deputy CEO of Rethink. “In spite of marijuana being unlawful, it stays among the most pre-owned drugs in the UK. Its potency is increasing, indicating more individuals are potentially at threat of mental illness. In seeking to conquer the present problems of criminalisation, we must defend against unintentionally creating a public health emergency.”

The charity is requiring more research study into the impacts of a change in the law. This would consist of education about health dangers and steps to manage the strength of marijuana on the market. Dow stated: “The needs and special dangers to individuals badly affected by mental illness needs to be at the heart of any conversation about the future instructions of marijuana policy in this country. We need more research study, evidence and education before any substantial choices are made.”

A specific concern is using high strength cannabis, or “skunk”, which increases the threat of developing psychosis. Psychosis can be a symptom of mental disorder, including schizophrenia and bipolar illness.

Sir Robin Murray, professor of psychiatric research study and chair of the Rethink Mental Disorder Clinical Advisory Group, stated high potency cannabis was accountable for a 3rd of all new clients in London being diagnosed with psychosis. “This is a clear indication that our present system is not working,” Murray stated.

Many pro-legalisation groups argue it would see the potency levels capped, reducing damaging effects, however Murray doubts. “In the United States, mentions that have legalised cannabis for leisure purposes have seen an increase in the usage and strength of marijuana, and a lot more cannabis-related issues.” Simon Gray, who has bipolar illness, blames his marijuana use in his late 20s and early 30s for the wear and tear of his mental health which resulted in him being sectioned. “It was hard to disregard the fact that much of the people in healthcare facility with me likewise had a history of utilizing cannabis,” he stated. “This problem isn’t going to go away. There are reasons why individuals delight in utilizing cannabis, but we need to educate individuals more about the prospective dangers.”

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