Dr. Pascal believes cannabis will be legalized in Dominica

“Whether we like it or not Cannabis [Marijuana] will be legal in Dominica”.

This is a statement by Ear, Nose and Throat Specialist Dr. Irvin Pascal who was speaking at the Dominica Association of Industry and Commerce (DAIC) ‘Eggs & Issues Breakfast’ held at the Prevo Cinemall on Thursday.

“The thing for us in Dominica is whether we have the self-confidence and the capacity to play in these high stakes,” he stated. “The other reason why I think cannabis will be legal in Dominica is that we are people we tend to follow where others lead, so we will follow. There is no doubt about that.”

Dr. Pascal stated however that legalization of marijuana doesn’t come without significant regulations to protect the public.

He stated further that some studies have shown that the people who smoke cannabis have less lung cancer than those who smoke cigarettes.

He mentioned also that the areas of concern, from the public perspective, is the risk to teenagers with neuropsychiatric disorders.

“Because as I said the system is significantly involved in the development of the brain, so in those teenage years that’s where the highest risk of what we call neuropsychiatric disorders exist,” Dr. Pascal explained.

According to Dr. Pascal a journal called “Marijuana Business Daily” printed an article which said that in 2016 the global legal cannabis economy stood at $14-billion and it will grow by 1,000 percent to $140-billion by 2027.

He stated that there is documented evidence that cannabis was used in traditional societies for medical purposes 5,000 years ago.

“It was only in the 1700s and 1800s it was brought to Europe by a physician and has been used in Europe and North America since, then until about 1942 when its use for medical purposes was prohibited,” Dr Pascal explained.

He said to-date some of the approved uses of cannabis include; for appetite stimulation in AIDS patients, for nausea and vomiting when getting Chemotherapy for cancers and chronic pains among other things.