Canadians in Favor of Legalization and Decriminalizing Marijuana
Published on 1/17/12
A recently released poll indicates that Canadians are in favor of legalzing or decriminalizing marijuana. This should come as no surprise since Canada has always been a bit ahead of the 'green curve'.
Canadians have green on their minds, but not in the environmental sense, according to a new poll.
Released on Tuesday, the poll suggests 66% of Canadians are in favour of the legalization or decriminalization of marijuana, with just 20% supporting leaving the laws as they are now.
The poll, conducted by Toronto-based Forum Research Inc., showed that residents of British Columbia were the most likely to support marijuana laws reform, with 73% of respondents indicating laws should be changed. Quebec had the lowest support for reforms, though the majority of respondents, 61%, supported changing marijuana legislation.
This public support comes on the heels of a new party policy approved at the Liberal Party of Canada’s renewal convention pushing for the legalization and regulation of marijuana. While it was the Liberals’ youth wing who initially put forward the motion, the poll shows it’s baby boomers who are the most likely to respond favourably to new marijuana legislation.
Respondents aged 55- to- 64 were the most likely to support legalization or decriminalization, with 73% supporting a shift. All other demographics polled in the mid- to- high- 60s in support of marijuana law reform.
“The public no longer favours devoting the time and resources required to restrict marijuana use and possession, while many feel the best strategy is to legalize and tax its sale,” wrote Lorne Bozinoff, president of Forum Research Inc., in a press release accompanying the research. “For a majority of Canadians, the war on this particular drug needs to end.”
But for all the fuss made at the Liberal renewal convention, respondents who voted for the party in the 2011 election lagged behind the NDP in their support for new regulations. Of Liberal-voting respondents, 64% supported marijuana law reform, only polling higher than Conservative voters, of which only 59% are in favour of change. NDP voters were 71% in favour. Green Party-voters were the most likely to support reform, according to the poll, with 78% of respondents in favour.
The poll was conducted December 13th in an interactive voice response telephone survey of 1,160 residents 18 or older, with a margin of error of plus or minus 2.9%, 19 times out of 20.