Thu | Nov 23, 2017

Drugs not the answer, young people - Chuck

Published:Thursday | September 14, 2017 | 12:00 AMJason Cross
Ministers of government show off the newly signed pledge, marking the partnership among ministers in the ‘Get High Grades, Not High Grade’ marijuana sensitisation campaign targeting youth. Seated (from left) are Health Minister Christopher Tufton; Justice Minister Delroy Chuck; Education Youth and Information Minister Ruel Reid, and State Minister in the Ministry of National Security Pearnel Charles Jr. Standing is Michael Tucker, executive director of the National Council on Drug Abuse.

Young people in Jamaica are being reminded by Justice Minister Delroy Chuck that drugs destroy the brain and, therefore, cannot be the solution for experiencing different degrees of pleasure.

"These are challenging times for our young people, and we cannot afford to lose focus." Chuck said. "We have to emphasise that drugs is not the answer. In recent times especially, with the use of two ounces or under not being a court matter, the impression I get is that far too many youngsters have taken up the use of marijuana. Somehow, we have to get the message out to our young people that marijuana, and any hard drug, has the probability of destroying their minds."

 

High Grades

 

Chuck was speaking at the launch of a youth public-education campaign themed 'Get High Grades, Not High Grade,' which specifically targets youth across Jamaica who have fallen victim to marijuana or other types of drug abuses. This focus is to bring them up to speed with the severe dangers of becoming an addict.

The campaign is a multi-government ministry partnership, which includes the Ministry of Health, through the National Council on Drug Abuse; Ministry of Justice, Ministry of National Security, and the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information.

"The possession and use is still illegal, whether you are under or over 18," Chuck said. He added that the decision to allow the use of two ounces of ganja for personal use was made because the courts were overburdened with hundreds of persons who were caught with a spliff, pleading guilty and paying $100 fines. The new legislation states that persons found with less than two ounces will be ticketed.

But Chuck said, "Unfortunately, the tickets are not yet provided, but will be shortly."

jason.cross@gleanerjm.com