skip navigation


Abstract Database

Register for Latest Research

Stay Informed
Register with NCJRS to receive NCJRS's biweekly e-newsletter JUSTINFO and additional periodic emails from NCJRS and the NCJRS federal sponsors that highlight the latest research published or sponsored by the Office of Justice Programs.

NCJRS Abstract

To download this abstract, check the box next to the NCJ number then click the "Back To Search Results" link. Then, click the "Download" button on the Search Results page. Also see the Obtain Documents page for direction on how to access resources online, via mail, through interlibrary loans, or in a local library.


NCJ Number: 194320 Find in a Library
Title: Reforming the Old and Refining the New: A Critical Overview of Australian Approaches to Cannabis
Author(s): Maurice Rickard
Date Published: 2001
Page Count: 75
Sponsoring Agency: Parliament of Australia Dept of the Parliamentary Library
Canberra ACT 2600, Australia
Sale Source: Parliament of Australia Dept of the Parliamentary Library
Parliament House
Canberra ACT 2600,
Document: PDF
Type: Research Paper
Format: Document
Language: English
Country: Australia
Annotation: This document presents the recreational use and supply of cannabis in Australia, the harmful effects of the drug, and the efficacy of current legislation in reducing harm. The personal, societal, and economic costs associated with the use of cannabis and legislation to control use are also examined.
Abstract: Cannabis use is widespread in Australia despite legislative efforts to control it. Approximately 40 percent of teenagers have used cannabis which is of great concern since early initiation has been linked to drug dependence. Heavy and sustained use of cannabis has been associated with psychosis, cognitive impairment, susceptibility to respiratory disorders and cancers, and decreased immunity to other infections. There are two legislative approaches to cannabis use in Australia. The first approach seeks to create policies that will reduce the use of cannabis while the second approach seeks to reduce the harm associated with cannabis use. The second approach focuses on reducing cannabis use in high risk situations. Both approaches are prohibitionist and the author suggests a trial of a non-prohibitionist approach to cannabis use in Australia. Legislation regarding cannabis use and possession varies among Australian territories with some territories implementing stricter laws than others. Cannabis use is prohibited by law in all territories irregardless of legislative sanctions. In conclusion all legislation causes harm as well as reduces harm. A balance between enduring some harms and costs and reducing other harms must be achieved in order for legislation to be effective. 219 Notes
Main Term(s): Drug abuse in foreign countries; Foreign drug law enforcement
Index Term(s): Controlled Substances; Drug abuse; Drug dependence; Juvenile drug use
To cite this abstract, use the following link:

*A link to the full-text document is provided whenever possible. For documents not available online, a link to the publisher's website is provided. Tell us how you use the NCJRS Library and Abstracts Database - send us your feedback.