Pubdate: Sat, 13 Oct 2007
Source: Daily Telegraph (UK)
Copyright: 2007 Telegraph Group Limited
Author: Jasper Copping
Bookmark: (Cannabis - United Kingdom)


Parents who allow or even encourage their children to  smoke cannabis
are guilty of ignorance and complacency,  senior police officers have

The Association of Chief Police Officers said many  parents did not
understand the serious health risks of  newer, more potent strains of
the drug.

The body was speaking out after a mother was sentenced  this week for
giving her children cannabis to stop them  buying the drug from street

Assistant Chief Constable Simon Byrne said parents  needed to take a
zero tolerance approach.

"You are not being a good parent by introducing drugs  in any sort of
way to children's experience to help  them grow up. It's harmful,
there's no place for it so  stamp it out," he said.

"There is a group of parents that are complacent and  turn a blind eye
to drug use in the sense of 'out of  sight, out of mind' and in
turning that blind eye, they  are creating a deeper mess because we
are worried about  the rise in potency of the cannabis that is on the

Glen Smyth, chairman of the Metropolitan Police  Federation, said
parents who may have smoked cannabis  recreationally in their
university days are misguided  about the health dangers. "We need to
get rid of the  idea that cannabis is really OK," he said.

Professor Robin Murray, of the Institute of Psychiatry,  added: "Some
liberal parents have been quite pleased  when their 15-year-olds tells
them they are taking  cannabis. They say 'oh, thank goodness they are
not  drinking'. Some kids are taking the equivalent in  cannabis terms
of what would be a bottle of vodka a  day." 
- ---
MAP posted-by: Richard Lake