Kingscliff researcher Annie Banbury is studying cannabis and tobacco.
Kingscliff researcher Annie Banbury is studying cannabis and tobacco. Blainey Woodham

Talk dope for cash

SOUTHERN Cross University is planning to give dollars for dope - information, that is.

The university is looking for men aged 25 to 34 who would be willing to talk about their smoking history and habits, and they're willing to pay them $50 for their trouble.

Research project officer Annie Banbury, who is based at Kingscliff Health Centre, said the study would specifically look at the process of mulling, which for the uninitiated, is the mixing of tobacco and cannabis.

North Coast Area Health and the University of NSW are conducting a study on the relationship between tobacco and cannabis.

A man from Mullumbimby, who asked not to be named, spoke about his mulling habits.

“Every few weeks I mix; I've been a smoker since I was 14. If you use cannabis straight, you use too much,” he said.

Mrs Banbury is planning to interview 15 non-indigenous men and 10 indigenous men to find out when they started smoking tobacco and cannabis.

She has interviewed four men so far and will travel to regional health centres to conduct more interviews.

“It is a qualitative study; it's not about huge numbers but we use grounded theory to analyse the thoughts, meanings and process of why men smoke,” she said.

The federally funded project aims to understand why the North Coast has higher than usual numbers of men in the 25-34 age group who smoke cigarettes.

All names and identities of participants will be kept strictly confidential, Mrs Banbury said.

The interview is taped and takes about an hour to complete.

Participants will be offered $50 in vouchers to cover expenses.

The research will influence the work carried out by the tobacco team at North Coast Area Health and the National Cannabis Prevention and Information Centre at the University of NSW in Sydney.

Call Mrs Banbury on 0409 461 174 to take part in the study.



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