Parents and carers of young people across the Harrogate district are being offered new advice about the dangers of cannabis.
Harrogate district Community Safety Group has published ‘a parent’s guide to cannabis’ as a result of concerns about increasing use of the class B drug.
The group is a partnership of North Yorkshire Police, the county council, fire and rescue service, Harrogate and Rural Clinical Commissioning Group and the borough council.
Coun Mike Chambers, Harrogate Borough Council cabinet member with responsibility for safer communities, said: “The guide for parents is not designed to cause alarm.
“However, it is important for us to raise awareness about the dangers of cannabis use and the damaging effect it can have on young lives.
“Help is available across the district and we want to promote the services on offer.
"We are working with our partner organisations in the community safety group to respond to the specific issues we face in the district.”
Earlier this year, a day-long seminar was held to discuss the issues facing the district and to draw up an action plan in response.
Raising awareness of the effects of cannabis and highlighting the legal position were some of the actions identified.
Despite recent media coverage about the apparent medical benefits of cannabis in helping to manage some pain, the drug remains illegal to possess for any reason in the UK.
The penalty for possession is five years in jail, an unlimited fine, or both.
Regular use of cannabis at a young age can also have damaging long-term effects on a person’s mental health long into adulthood.
The guide helps parents spot the signs of usage and the likely effects, how they should respond and promotes the help and support available.
The guide can be downloaded from the Safer Harrogate website (www.saferharrogate.org.uk)www.saferharrogate.org.uk and copies will be distributed via schools and at future partnership events.
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