Toronto, ON, March 16, 2020 — Poison Prevention Week runs from March 15 to March 21, 2020 and aims to draw attention to the causes of unintentional poisoning and how to prevent them from occurring – this includes children unintentionally consuming cannabis edibles. As Poison Prevention Week kicks off, an Ipsos poll conducted on behalf of Parachute reveals that most parents who are using cannabis edibles are not storing them properly.
Close to 4 in 10 Canadian parents (37%) say they are cannabis users, of which 27% say it is for recreational purposes, and 10% for medical reasons. Among Canadian parents who use cannabis, half (51%) say that they consume cannabis edibles – either store bought or homemade.
Due to lower body weight and less physical development, children are particularly vulnerable to poisoning from chemicals in cannabis. While cannabis edibles may look like a snack to a child, cannabis can be poisonous to children as it affects them differently than adults.
Nearly 9 in 10 parents agree (88%; 52% strongly agree) that it is easy for a child to mistake cannabis edibles for candies of sweets, such as gummies, brownies or cookies. More than nine in ten (94%) parents who use cannabis also agreed that it is their responsibility to safely put away their cannabis, with three in four (74%) saying they strongly feel that this is their responsibility.
Few Canadian Parents Properly Storing Their Cannabis Edibles
Among parents who use cannabis, 72% say they always put away their cannabis product immediately after using them. Notably though, parents under 35 are less likely to say they always put away cannabis products immediately after use (64% vs. 74% 35-44, 79% 45+).
However, only one in four (25%) parents who consume cannabis edibles “properly” store their edibles. Proper storage is defined as keeping edibles in a child-resistant container or package and keeping them in a locked compartment, drawer or cupboard. Among parents who did not consume cannabis edibles at the time of the study, but expressed interest in doing so when it is legal, only three in ten (31%) showed that they would be properly storing them, that is, in a child-resistant container/package and keep them in a locked compartment/drawer/cupboard.
Four in ten (40%) parents say they know what the poison control resources in their area are, this is considerably higher among parents who say they consume edibles and cannabis users in general. Parents who consume edibles (57%) and cannabis users in general (50%) are more likely to say they know the poison control resources in their area are, compared to non-users (33%).
Parents under 35 (47% vs. 37% 35+) are also more likely to be aware. Regionally, Albertans (48%) and BC residents (47%) are most likely to be aware, while Quebecers are least likely to say they know (32%).
About the Study
These are some of the findings of an Ipsos poll conducted between November 25th to December 2nd, 2019, on behalf of Parachute. For this survey, a sample of 1,000 Canadians parents of children under 15 years old (500 among parents who use cannabis, and 500 among parents who do not use cannabis) was interviewed online. Quotas and weighting were employed to ensure that the sample’s composition reflects that of the population according to census parameters. The precision of Ipsos online polls is measured using a credibility interval. In this case, the poll is accurate to within ± 3.5 percentage points, 19 times out of 20, had all Canadian parents of children under 15 years old been polled. The credibility interval will be wider among subsets of the population. All sample surveys and polls may be subject to other sources of error, including, but not limited to coverage error, and measurement error.
For more information on this news release, please contact:
Jennifer McLeod Macey
Vice President, Ipsos Public Affairs
+1 416 324 2018
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