Study: Cannabis use more accepted than smoking tobacco

Regular cannabis use has become more accepted by Australians than smoking tobacco, the latest National Drug Strategy Household Survey (NDSHS) has found, reports The Guardian.

For the 2019 data compiled by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, around 20,000 people aged 14 and over were asked about their attitudes towards drugs. It found that, for the first time, 20 per cent of respondents were in favour of regular cannabis use, compared to 15 per cent who were in favour of tobacco.
As cannabis became more accepted, more Australians supported greater penalties for tobacco use, in line with declining smoking rates nationwide, the report said. About 85 per cent of Australians supported stronger law enforcement against giving tobacco to minors, while about seven in ten respondents thought that the use of e-cigarettes in public places should be restricted.
At the same time, two in five Australians support the legalisation of cannabis, a 16 per cent increase over the past decade.
In some areas, including Sydney, support for cannabis legalisation was as high as 60 per cent. In Melbourne, 57 per cent thought the drug should be legalised for personal use, while 47 per cent of Brisbane residents were in favour of legalisation. In the ACT (Australian Capital Territory), where the drug has been decriminalised since 2020, around 66 per cent of Canberrans supported legalisation for personal use.
The findings follow a growing global trend in favour of legalising cannabis for recreational use. Some 19 US states have legalised the drug, joining a number of countries such as Canada, Spain and Uruguay.
The next NDSHS survey will begin at the end of July and conclude in December 2022. The survey serves as the basis for planning government policy on tobacco, alcohol and other drugs.

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