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  • Author
    Emilee Trujillo
  • Co-author

    Dr. Timothy Fong

  • Title

    Cannabis Use and Non-Use in Hispanics of Imperial County, CA

  • Abstract


    The aims of this pilot study were to:  identify the reasons for use and non-use of cannabis,  understand current social attitudes and perspectives towards cannabis and determine the level of cannabis use in the Hispanic community of the Imperial County, CA.



    • Anonymous self-administered questionnaires were conducted with participants (N=174) selected at random from 3 local Walmart stores.

    • To be eligible for participation subjects had to be Hispanic, over the age of 12, and current residents of the Imperial County, CA.

    • Attitudes towards cannabis legalization were assessed using a 5- point rating scale and perceived stigma towards cannabis use was assessed using an 8 item 5-point Likert scale adapted from the Perceived Stigma of Substance Abuse Scale (PSAS) developed by Luoma, J.B. (2010).



    Hispanics from the Imperial County appear to have higher rates of cannabis use in the past month, past year, and lifetime than U.S. Hispanics and the U.S. population. In this sample, the average age of cannabis use onset was 17.28 years (SD=5.19) and 16% of the total sample were current cannabis users.  Common reasons for using cannabis included stress relief, experimentation, anxiety coping and pain relief. Common reasons for abstaining from cannabis included negative personal or observed experiences, and fear of legal, social, or interpersonal repercussions. Perceived social stigma towards cannabis was overall near neutral ( M=3.17 out of a 5-point Likert scale). Hispanics from the Imperial County may be less likely to support legalization of cannabis than the U.S. Hispanics (40% vs. 52%) and more likely to be neutral than U.S. Hispanics (41% vs. 4%).1



     1.  Geiger, A. and Geiger, A. (2018). About six-in-ten Americans support marijuana legalization. [online] Pew Research Center. Available at: [Accessed 16 Jul. 2018].


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