Marijuana Legalization in Canada
On October 17th, 2018, Canada became the second country to legalize recreational marijuana use. The government is still working to measure the immediate impact of marijuana legalization in Canada on the populace. Every three months, the Canadian government tracks marijuana-related behaviours with the voluntary National Cannabis Survey (NCS).
For parents of teenagers, marijuana legalization solves some old dangers — and presents new risks. With legalization, teenagers are less exposed to other substances mixed into drugs by dealers, and to dealers themselves. On the other hand, marijuana legalization in Canada increases the availability of more and more varieties of weed to teenagers. The survey measured the use of various marijuana products: the dry leaf, oil cartridges, and vape pens, liquid and solid concentrates, hashish/kief, edibles, and other liquids.
Are Teens In Canada Consuming Cannabis?
The advent of marijuana legalization in Canada has increased the rate of use among several demographics. The good news for parents of teenagers is that teens aren’t among those demographics. In fact, between legalization in 2018 and the Q1 NCS survey in 2019, the rate of marijuana consumption for teens ages 15-17 dropped from 19.8% to 10.4%. Teenagers were the only group for whom marijuana consumption actually dropped after it became legal in Canada. Teenagers were also the only demographic that didn’t have a gender disparity when it came to marijuana consumption. Boys and girls ages 15-17 consumed cannabis at the same rate.
However, Canadian teens aren’t in the clear yet. 6% of Canadian teens reported being passengers in a car driven by someone high on marijuana. Although it doesn’t involve directly consuming cannabis themselves, riding with someone high is dangerous behaviour.
Provincial Consumption Rates After Marijuana Legalization in Canada
Canadian cannabis consumption doesn’t just vary by age group or gender; it also varies from province to province. Marijuana legalization in Canada federally applied to the whole country, but different provinces have different laws as to what exactly is legal. Quebec, for example, has the lowest marijuana consumption rate at 11.8%. This low rate stems from Quebecois provincial laws banning the growing of marijuana in homes, along with the sale of edibles.
The percentages of people ages 15 and up who have consumed marijuana in the last three months (as of Q1 2019) by province are:
- Nova Scotia — 25.7 percent
- Newfoundland and Labrador — 21.1 percent
- New Brunswick — 20.3 percent
- Alberta — 19.3 percent
- British Columbia — 19.1 percent
- Prince Edward Island — 18.8 percent
- Ontario — 17.5 percent
- Manitoba — 16.3 percent
- Saskatchewan — 15.5 percent
- Quebec — 11.8 percent
Marijuana Addiction Treatment for Teens
Are you worried that your teen is smoking weed after marijuana legalization in Canada? If so, Venture Academy can help you keep your family sober and safe.
If you notice sudden mood or appetite changes, or that they appear to be in a daze, marijuana may be a likely culprit. For concerned parents across Canada, Venture Academy offers a 30-day assessment to see what treatment your teen needs.