Teenagers can get cannabis "easier than alcohol"


6:01am 18th May 2017
(Updated 9:20am 18th May 2017)

There's a warning that teenagers are finding it easier to get hold of cannabis than alcohol.

The warning comes from think tank Volteface, which says its research, released off the back of Mental Health Awareness Week, also shows young people are unaware of the effect the drug can have on their mental health. 

Paul North has worked as a drug treatment worker in North Yorkshire for the last 9 years, 5 of which were in Harrogate.

He now represents Volteface, which is calling for a regulated cannabis market.  

WATCH: How to talk to your kids about drugs

Paul says the research is concerning, because it now only shows that teenagers are finding the drug easy to get hold of, but also that the type of cannabis they're then consuming is very strong.  

He said: "There are two active ingredients in cannabis, THC and CBD. There are 779 strains of cannabis and each one of these strains have varying levels of THC and CBD. THC is the pleasurable element of the weed, but it can also cause the problems. CBD is an anti-psychotic and can calm the mind. These two chemicals act alongside each other.

"Now what we see from street weed at the moment is the THC level is very, very high, and the CBD level is much lower. 

"We have this image of weed being this quite a safe, calming drug, but the reality is street weed is much different. That THC level is much higher. 

"I've come across many young people who are using street weed, high level THC weed, on a regular basis and they're just disengaging with education because it is so difficult to smoke that sort of weed and concentrate in a lesson. 

"I've spent years educating kids on cannabis and when you say to them, that type of weed you are smoking, they have no idea.

"One of the issues with the cannabis market at the moment is because it's unregulated, because it's controlled by criminals, there is no negotiation in terms of what you want to have. It's  a real policy concern for us that kids are getting access to drugs that are detrimental to their mental health and well-being." 

Paul has been telling Stray FM more about the research: 

The following services provide advice and information about drugs in North Yorkshire: 




Share This Story

Delicious Submit this page to reddit
Suggested articles
Dylan's hair being cut for Little princess trust, harrogate

Harrogate teenager cuts hair for Macmillan

"In memory of our Uncle Derek for Macmillan Cancer Support because cancer is horrible."

Missing Harrogate teenager Dom Sowa

More than £12,000 raised in memory of Harrogate teenager

17-year-old Dom Sowa's family launched a crowdfunding campaign after he died in Cornwall.

Most read
masham crash

Lucky escape after Masham crash

The driver and passenger of this car only suffered minor injuries after it came off the road on Friday night.


Cyclist hurt in Harrogate collision

His injuries are not thought to be serious.

Newer article

WATCH: How to talk to your kids about drugs

Harrogate, Craven & Wharfedale: Paul North, who's worked in drug treatment and addiction for the last 9 years, gives us his advice.

Older article

Ilkley Moor fire caused by BBQ

Harrogate, Craven & Wharfedale: The fire service is reminding people they shouldn't be having barbecues on the moorland.

Top articles

Police: No one else was involved in Gaia Pope's death

National: Police say Gaia Pope suffered no injuries to suggest anyone else was involved in her death.

Stampede kills 15 near popular tourist town in Morocco

World: At least 15 women were killed and another 10 people injured during a crush as food aid was distributed in a Moroccan village.

George Kruis and Mike Brown in England 35-man squad for Samoa

Sport: England head coach Eddie Jones has named a 35-man squad for the final game of their Old Mutual Wealth Series against Samoa, live on <em>Sky Sports Action</em>.

Jeffrey Tambor may quit Transparent amid harassment claims

Showbiz: Actor Jeffrey Tambor is considering quitting the Amazon series Transparent following two sexual harassment allegations made against him.

All this year's Christmas adverts - which is your favourite?

Harrogate, Craven & Wharfedale: From Moz the Monster to Paddington Bear via some chocolate woodland creatures, we've put all this year's Christmas adverts in one place so you can choose a favourite.

Otley Business Summit declared a success

Harrogate, Craven & Wharfedale: It discussed the future of the retail, light industrial and commercial economy in small towns.

LISTEN: Ripon author writes anti-bullying books for schools

Harrogate, Craven & Wharfedale: Monica Gabb has started crowdfunding to get 1000 books into schools across North Yorkshire.

LISTEN: Harrogate fundraisers organise walk to mark World Prematurity Day

Harrogate, Craven & Wharfedale: The group includes Sian Striskiene whose son was born 13 weeks prematurely.

Harrogate Christmas Market

Christmas: In full swing for 2017!

Experience Christmas At Thorp Perrow

Features: The kids will love meeting Santa!

Now open until 2am!

Food and Drink: "The happiest place in Harrogate"

LISTEN: Harrogate fundraisers organise walk to mark World Prematurity Day

Harrogate, Craven & Wharfedale: The group includes Sian Striskiene whose son was born 13 weeks prematurely.

The 10 Rules of Regifting

Home & Garden: Save money, time and clutter

The Yorkshire floods: one year on

Special Reports: People affected by last year's downpours describe what has happened in the last 12 months

Tour de Yorkshire: LIVE BLOG

Harrogate, Craven & Wharfedale: Follow all the action as 2017's Tour de Yorkshire hits the Stray FM area.

Tour de Yorkshire host venues confirmed

Harrogate, Craven & Wharfedale: There'll be no re-run of this year's memorable Tour de France stage finish in Harrogate.

Christmas lights switch-ons near you

Harrogate, Craven & Wharfedale: Find out where you can see the festive illuminations being turned on and when across Harrogate, Craven and Wharfedale.


Who's going to win I'm a Celebrity?