Fully legal or only medical and religious purposes? Public support for cannabis policies in the Eastern Caribbean
Article publication date: 1 December 2021
Issue publication date: 1 July 2022
Public support for various policy options for managing cannabis in the Caribbean and the characteristics of those most likely to support specific policy options remains largely unknown. The purpose of this study is to investigate the impact of age, sex and employment status on the public attitudes towards the full legalisation of cannabis, partial legalisation (that is for medical or religious purposes) or its continued prohibition.
Using secondary data collected from nationally representative public opinion polls conducted by Caribbean Research and Development Services from 2016–2018, this paper compares the public attitudes towards cannabis in Barbados, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, St. Lucia, Antigua and Barbuda and Dominica using a multinomial logistic model.
Support for the continued prohibition, legalisation or partial legalisation of cannabis varied significantly by age, employment status and country of residence. Women, people over 51 years of age and the employed were more likely to support full prohibition. Attitudes towards cannabis policy in the Caribbean are by no means homogenous, neither are the policy shifts occurring across the region, with some of these changes occurring slowly and not necessarily reflective of cultural dynamics.
This study is unique in its cross-country analysis in the Caribbean and providing valuable insight into the levels public support for cannabis legalisation. Its findings can help shape targeted public education in these countries.
The authors have no conflict of interest to declare. This research did not receive any specific grant from funding agencies in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors. The authors wish to thank CADRES for the use of the data.
Griffith, A., Jackman, M. and Wickham, P. (2022), "Fully legal or only medical and religious purposes? Public support for cannabis policies in the Eastern Caribbean", Drugs and Alcohol Today, Vol. 22 No. 1, pp. 36-46. https://doi.org/10.1108/DAT-03-2021-0015
Emerald Publishing Limited
Copyright © 2021, Emerald Publishing Limited