Study points to the biggest risks of pot - 660 CITYNEWS
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Study points to the biggest risks of pot

It’s the most widely-used illicit drug in Canada – but do you know the major health risks associated with using marijuana?

A new health study from the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health shows two of the biggest health issues.

Two of the biggest health issues to pop up out of cannabis use are motor vehicle accidents and dependency.

That’s according to Dr. Benedikt Fischer, senior scientist with the centre.

It’s believed four to 12 per cent of accidents in 2010 were a direct result of cannabis use, while dependency is estimated to affect 380-thousand Canadians.

“These problems which are in the thousands you know have enormously negative health, social and economic consequences,” says Fischer.

Fischer says this is the first-ever study where a team has been actually able to put together informed estimates of the amount of people affected by marijuana.

However, ‘not so fast’ says Keith Fagin of Calgary 420, a local group working for the legalization of marijuana.

Fagin notes, Fischer’s statements don’t include hard numbers but phrases such as “we estimate.”

Fagin told 660News, studies on the medical effects of marijuana have been limited in North America because it’s restricted as a Schedule 1 drug.

“The U.S. doesn’t allow it. When Harper got in, in 2006, we had a small, $4 million for medical cannabis research, that was eliminated immediately. There is no real solid science that way where they’re coming up with this stuff. It’s made up, it’s like the reefer madness nonsense,” said Fagin.

With a federal election on the horizon and legalization of cannabis a Liberal platform plank, Fagin anticipates we’ll be hearing much more from the prohibitionists in the months to come.

Last August, an Angus Reid Global survey found 60 per cent of Canadians support pro-marijuana legislation.