MCA – Recreational Cannabis Survey Results
The Mohawk Council of Akwesasne (MCA) Recreational Cannabis Working Task Group is pleased to provide the community with the results from the MCA Recreational Cannabis Survey.
In July 2018, the Government of Canada is expected to pass legislation legalizing the sale of recreational cannabis. The MCA established a Recreational Cannabis Working Task Group in September 2017 to examine the issue and ensure the community’s best interest is protected. A Recreational Cannabis Survey was created to determine how community members feel about the regulation, distribution and sale of recreational cannabis in Akwesasne.
Between February 16, 2018 through April 6, 2018, the Recreational Cannabis Survey was completed by community members. There were two ways to participate in the survey: an electronic copy of the survey was available through Survey Monkey. In addition, paper copies of the survey were available and completed paper surveys were given to a technician that would transfer the information to the Survey Monkey website.
After the survey closed, the First Nations of Quebec and Labrador Health and Social Services Commission (FNQLHSSC) compiled the data, and on May 24, 2018, presented the results to the MCA Recreational Cannabis Working Task Group, Grand Chief and Council and the community through CKON’s Tetewatharon and the May MCA General Meeting in Kana:takon.
In total, 590 respondents took the survey including 146 participants for the paper version and 444 participants for the electronic version. Fourteen electronic submissions were deleted because they were repetitive submissions from the same IP address. Some of the paper surveys had only the first five questions answered as the remaining six questions were on the second page and survey takers may have not been aware of questions on the other side of the page. A total of 576 surveys were then analyzed for the first five questions and 548 for the remaining six questions.
Based on the analysis, it is clear that the community is aware of the pending federal legislation to legalize recreational cannabis. Almost seventy-four percent (74%) of respondents believe that the Mohawk Council of Akwesasne should allow the recreational use of cannabis in Akwesasne. Almost sixty-six percent (66%) of respondents support the sale of recreational cannabis in Akwesasne. Over sixty percent (60%) of respondents support sales by either a privately owned, but MCA licensed business or, a combination of privately owned and MCA owned businesses. Finally, over seventy percent (70%) of respondents believe that Akwesasne should adopt its own laws and regulations governing the production, distribution, sale, and possession of recreational cannabis in Akwesasne.
After reviewing the survey results, it was identified that there was a lack of response from youth (18 and under) and elders (65 and up). The Recreational Cannabis Working Task Group would like to target these age groups to obtain a more thorough response. The MCA Youth Council is working on identifying the youth voice, by hosting educational round tables on cannabis in the community. After this data is collected, a recommendation will be provided to Council to determine the next steps.
Niawenko:wa to all that participated in the survey. A special thanks goes out to the research team from the First Nations of Quebec and Labrador Health and Social Services Commission for their assistance in conducting the survey. If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact Mohawk Government at 613-575-2348.