Cannabis Use Falls Among Dutch Youth 

  Cannabis Use Falls Among Dutch Youth 

Posted by FoM on October 04, 2000 at 12:25:46 PT
By Tony Sheldon, Utrecht  
Source: British Medical Journal 

Cannabis use among Dutch schoolchildren aged 10-18 years has fallen for the first time in 16 years, a national survey of risk behaviour among 10,000 young people has shown. The school survey, carried out by Trimbos, the Netherlands Institute for Mental Health and Addiction showed that about one in five young people had used cannabis at some time in their lives but less than a tenth had used it in the previous four weeks ("current users"). 
Such a survey is carried out every four years with funding from the health ministry. The surveys have shown that cannabis use among current users rose sharply in the early and mid-1990s, from a figure of 3% in 1988 to a high of 11% in 1996. The figures for current users in 2000 were 9.3% (12.4% for boys and 6.5% for girls), compared with 10.7% (13.7% for boys and 7.7% for girls) in 1996. The latest results also show a 40% reduction in use of ecstasy from 2.2% to 1.4% and in use of amphetamines from 1.9% to 1.1% Cocaine use increased from 1.1% to 1.2 Among cannabis users most had smoked the drug once or twice in the previous four weeks; a third of cannabis smokers were "frequent users" (had smoked two or more times a week). More than half of cannabis users bought their drug from other users, a third from "coffee shops," and one in 10 from dealers. The Dutch survey follows recent data also showing a "striking" reduction in drug use among 15-16 year olds in the United Kingdom (BMJ 320:1536-7), even though more than a third had used cannabis. The Dutch health minister, Els Borst, has called for more research into why young people use drugs. She believes a more open debate is now possible. Together with Germany and Switzerland, she is calling for a European "scientific and political" conference on soft drugs. Report Released: September 16, 2000© BMJ 2000 NewsHawk: Ethan Russo, MDMontana Neurobehavioral Specialists900 North Orange St., Suite 303Missoula, MT 59802USAVoice: (406) 327-3372FAX: (406) 327-3355E-Mail: erusso (Primary)E-Mail: erusso (Secondary) Marijuana and Migraines - Ethan Russo, MD Articles & Web Sites:British Medical Journal Drug Abuse Among Teenagers Leveling Off Use Falls Among Dutch Youth

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Comment #3 posted by CD1 on October 06, 2000 at 11:01:22 PT
Isn't it ironic that Cannabis use among youths is falling in the Netherlands, where it is legal, but in the U.S. where it is illegal, cannabis use is up among teenagers (if you believe Gen. McCaffery)? Kind of blows his whole theory about legalizing marijuana, doesn't it? 
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Comment #2 posted by MikeEEEEE on October 04, 2000 at 15:33:17 PT
Doc, you could expect McCareFreak to twist the story some-how, their agenda is clear.
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Comment #1 posted by Ethan Russo, MD on October 04, 2000 at 13:53:22 PT:
Hmmm, General McCaffrey Take Notice
This is an important refutation that liberalization of cannabis laws increases usage by the children, which has been one of the staple scare tactics employed by the prohibitionists. To all read this: Please share the original link with your local newspaper and ask them to carry the story! I am available for interviews if they want an advocate against prohibition.
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