Canada only recently began recreational marijuana sales this past October and Canadians are already less accepting of it.
According to a new survey by researchers at Dalhousie University, support has dropped to 50.1 per cent from 68.6 per cent in 2017. The survey questioned 1,051 adults over four days last month. It had an estimated margin of error of 3.1%, 19 times out of 20.
The researchers also found that the number of people who neither agree nor disagree with legalization appears to have increased to 20.3 per cent from 6.9 per cent.
According to the survey’s lead author Sylvain Charlebois, respondents had concern over the risks cannabis pose to children, young adults and pets who may have more access to cannabis products.
“I think the study actually points to the fact that Canadians are still cannabis-illiterate, to a certain extent,” Charlebois remarked.
“A lot has to do with messaging, how governments have been engaging with the public. The focus has been on distribution, of course, and keeping Canadians protected, I guess, but I would say that Health Canada really hasn’t done a good job in explaining to people what is cannabis, what cannabinoids are.”
“The majority of Canadians are still in agreement with the legalization of marijuana but not as much,” he says. “There are more and more people unsure whether this is a good idea.”
The survey also revealed that nearly 18.8 per cent of respondents said they were concerned about being seen buying legal cannabis. Meanwhile 26.2% wouldn’t want coworkers to know they use recreational cannabis. Additionally, 33.8% said they wouldn’t want to work with a regular recreational user.