Marijuana and other drugs are more popular among Australian kids than alcohol, say alarming figures.
According to The Sunday Mail, figures show that almost 3,500 charges were laid against children aged between 10 and 15 over drug-related offences in the last three years, while only 1,100 liquor offences by children were recorded during the same period.
Police and health experts are worried as children are increasingly taking a casual approach to drugs, especially dope, because it is cheaper and more accessible than booze.
Youngsters seeking marijuana on the streets are reported to pay as little as 20 dollars per gram, and one joint can be made with as little as half a gram of marijuana and can be shared between a handful of people.
"There is definite evidence that children are using cannabis at a much younger age these days," News.com.au quoted Richard Norman, Drug Arm's treatment co-ordinator in Brisbane as saying.
"Children in grade seven or eight can have a misinformed, casual attitude to the drug.
"Cannabis is so readily available to the younger kids through older friends or siblings. Some are getting it free. It can be easier to access cannabis than alcohol."
"As a GP I have seen children in this age bracket of 10-15 years use marijuana on a regular basis and I personally find it extremely distressing," Australian Medical Association Queensland President Dr Richard Kidd told The Sunday Mail.