Cannabis Campaign Launched by Local Health Unit

The Windsor-Essex County Health Unit is launching an education campaign targeting students and young people and their use of cannabis.

Even though it is legal now to use it in Canada for people over the age of 19, Health Promotion Specialist Melissa Valentik says there are increased dangers for people who use it under the age of 25.

"Compared to other age groups, young people under 25, they are at higher risk, a lot of people don't realize this is that your brain actually continues to develop to the age of 25," she says.

Valentik told AM800's The Afternoon News that cannabis can hinder that development.

"The THC in cannabis which is that mind altering or psychoactive compound in cannabis actually affects the same areas of the brain that direct development," she says. "This means that if you are under 25 and using cannabis, you have a higher risk of long term of permanent affects on your cognitive skills, things like memory, thinking, learning or problem solving."

Warnings will be seen in bus shelters, buses, movie theatres, social media and at the University of Windsor and St. Clair College.  

She says even for people over the age of 25, daily use of cannabis should be avoided and people should make sure the THC content is less than 10%. 

The health unit also says cannabis should never be used by people who are pregnant or breastfeeding , or those with a history of mental illness.

There is not a cannabis retail outlet in Windsor-Essex.