French Polynesia Youth Marijuana Use Reportedly Increasing

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Surveys say 1/3 of new high schoolers have smoked dope

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, Sept. 25, 2013) – There is concern in French Polynesia at the growing incidence of young people smoking cannabis.

Tahiti-Infos reports that surveys show about a third of children entering high school have tried pakalolo as the local variety of the drug is known.

The website reports that in 2011 about 600 students quit school because of drugs problems, adding that the problem is not as bad as in some urban areas in France.

It says among 15 year-olds in French Polynesia, cannabis consumption appears to be more significant and riskier than in France.

Specialised counselling services in Tahiti say they have met patients who began smoking at the age of six.

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