Recreational use of dried cannabis and oils will become legal in Canada on Oct. 17, 2018. The Canadian Medical Association Journal is calling on the federal government to review the legislation in a year. (iStock)

Canadians pessimistic about their ability to keep pot away from minors: poll

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With less than a month to go until recreational cannabis becomes legal in Canada, the majority of Canadians are pessimistic that the legislation will achieve one of its main stated goals: keeping pot away from minors, according to a new survey.

While the legislation includes several measures, designed to prevent young people consuming pot, nearly six out of ten Canadians (57 per cent) don’t believe in the government’s ability to keep cannabis out of the hands of children when recreational marijuana becomes legal on Oct. 17, according to the survey released by the Angus Reid Institute.

A similar number of Canadians (60 per cent) also worry about the ability of their community police forces to effectively assess and punish those driving while high. Canadians also remain almost equally divided on whether cannabis legalization will do more harm than good in their communities.

Nevertheless, the majority of Canadians (62 per cent) support the Liberal government’s drive to legalize recreational marijuana even if they remain sceptical about the government’s ability to weaken the earnings of organized crime in the near future, one the other key goals of cannabis legalization.

Residents of British Columbia seem to be the most enthusiastic about the prospect of legalizing marijuana.

When cannabis becomes legal for recreational use, British Columbians are significantly more likely than those in other parts of Canada to say they will consume pot, according to the survey.

In that province, more than three-in-ten (37 per cent) say that they will probably or definitely use it, compared to a national average of one-in-four (26 per cent). Albertans are much less likely to say that they are going to use.

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