The Hidden Harm of Cannabis

Publish Date: 30/08/2012

The hidden harm of cannabis use amongst young lesbian, gay and bisexual people

A new report emerged this week claiming that cannabis users who start using the drug when under the age of 18 run the risk of irreversibly reducing their IQ. Many have argued that this research goes some way to explaining why people who regularly use cannabis often seem to under-achieve.

These new findings are especially poignant in relation to the life-course of lesbian, gay and bisexual (LGB) people. Within the Part of the Picture 2009-11 Report into LGB substance use in England, almost a third of LGB respondents aged 16-24 had used cannabis in the last month, and LGB people of all ages were shown to be five times more likely to have used cannabis in the last month than the general population.

Taken together, these findings suggest a high level of hidden harm amongst the LGB community who are more likely to use cannabis than their heterosexual peers and who may in the process be limiting their ability to achieve their full potential.

You can read the full Part of the Picture 2009-11 Report here.

For further information about Part of the Picture, please visit the project website http://www.lgf.org.uk/policy-research/part-of-the-picture/