Drugs

Could Marijuana Use Lead To A Calmer Prison Environment? Swiss Prisons Find Drug's Effects On Inmates Positive

Prison Weed
Up to 80 percent of male prisoners at a Swiss prison use marijuana to improve their prison experience, a study estimates. Creative Commons

A new study published in the International Journal of Drug Policy states that at an all-male prison in Switzerland, about 50 to 80 percent of prisoners use marijuana. Prison staff believed marijuana use among inmates has had a positive, rather than negative, effect.

According to the study’s survey, prisoners estimated that about 80 percent of inmates used marijuana; prison guards, on the other hand, estimated that about 50 percent of inmates used it.

In the study, which is titled, “Cannabis use in a Swiss male prison: Qualitative study exploring detainees’ and staffs’ perspectives," the researchers interviewed about 58 people total: 31 male inmates (averaging at about 35 years old) and 27 prison staff and guards (with the typical age averaging to about 46 years old).

The study noted that all participants expressed similar thoughts on the positive effects of marijuana use. They said that marijuana use was “analgesic, calming, self-help to go through the prison experience,” and that it “relieve[s] stress, facilitate[s] sleep, prevent[s] violence, and [acts as a] social pacifier.”

Cannabis is illegal, but it is used quite often in the prison environment. In conclusion, the authors urged for a clearer policy that would address cannabis use and could tailor certain measures to individual users.

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