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Dalhousie professor calls selling pot and booze together a public health risk

Dr. Simon Sherry says there's a reason no other jurisdiction is selling the two together
050718-POS Store in Store
(Photo courtesy of NSLC)

HALIFAX - One Dalhousie University professor thinks the provincial government is making a big mistake selling cannabis in liquor stores. 

Dr. Simon Sherry, professor in the department of Psychology and Neuroscience, said the province missed the mark by 'co-locating' the two and that there's a reason no other jurisdictions have done this. 

He calls the decision short-sighted and says selling the two at one retailer represents a public health risk.

"The question is why is our government ignoring the consensus that co-location is a bad idea?" Sherry asked rhetorically. 

"I think it is an unprecedented bad decision...that runs counter to many recommendations. It is a decision that runs counter to best practices. It is a decision that runs counter to scientific evidence." 

Sherry adds Nova Scotia already has high consumption of alcohol and cannabis individually, including leading Canada in cannabis use. 

He believes the current plan for selling pot at the NSLC will add to the health issues that already exist in the province.

When it comes to marketing, the province is also missing the mark by trying to make the product seem exciting with phrases like 'relax' and 'enhance,' Sherry said. 

Sherry thinks the government did a good job changing marketing around tobacco and deserves credit, but they're off to a rocky start with marijuana.

"But why we are marketing cannabis to our population in such a way that's encouraging its use along with alcohol, and in a way that's making it seem very appealing, is not a public health success it's a public health failure." 

Matthew Moore

About the Author: Matthew Moore

Born on Cape Breton Island, Matthew is a reporter and weekend anchor for NEWS 95.7 and
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