Higher numbers for legalising marijuana

The legalisation of marijuana is now supported by 42 per cent of surveyed Australians, an increase of nice per cent in just four years.

The findings from the Roy Morgan Single Source survey indicate Australians aged 18 to 34 are the most likely to support the legalisation of marijuana. This is also the segment of the population where opinion has shifted to the greatest degree over the past four years with a 14 per cent increase in support since 2015.

“The ACT Legislative Assembly’s decision to legalise the possession, use and cultivation of small amounts of cannabis has brought Australia’s laws surrounding marijuana firmly back into the national spotlight,” Roy Morgan CEO Michele Levine said.

“The decision certainly reflects the evolving mood of the ACT electorate where 47 per cent of [surveyed] residents want to see marijuana legalised – up 14 per cent points from 2015 and a higher level of support for legalisation than in any of Australia’s six states. At 40 per cent, those ACT residents who don’t support the legalisation of marijuana are in the minority.”

“The changing attitudes towards marijuana use in Australia follow well publicised legislative changes in the US in which the use of cannabis is now fully legal in 11 states and the use of medicinal cannabis is allowed in 33 states. The trend towards legalisation of the use of cannabis in the US is continuing and the ACT’s legislation marks a step in that direction in Australia.”

Perhaps surprisingly, the two groups most opposed to the legalisation of marijuana are the youngest and oldest Australians. Only a little over a quarter of surveyed 14-17 year olds (26 per cent) and a third of those aged 65-plus (33 per cent) support such a move.

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