Grace On You, LLC has received multiple inquiries on the legalization of Marijuana Initiative 502 – Thank you Sean Chavez of PREVENT! You are an excellent resource especially when it comes to our youth!!!
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News Brief: For Immediate Release 12/6/2012
Contact: Derek Franklin, WASAVP President 206.849.8963; firstname.lastname@example.org
Marijuana Legalization Fails According to Student Mock Election
Prevention Community Braces for Increased Marijuana Use among Washington Youth
(Olympia, WA) The week before Washington voters passed Initiative 502 legalizing recreational marijuana for adults over age 21, youth in the state failed the same initiative by a margin of 49% to 51% according to the 2012 student Mock Election.
This result by Washington K-12 students is significant because legalization poses the greatest risk to youth.
As marijuana becomes easier for youth to obtain, more marijuana advertizing targets youth, and community attitudes become more favorable to the drug, Washington youth are more likely to become marijuana users.
Teens enter substance abuse treatment for marijuana problems more than any other drug problem, including alcohol. In light of the passage of I-502, significant, coordinated efforts are needed to ensure our youth are protected from the harms of marijuana and supported in making health choices.
Anticipating the challenge, the Washington Association for Substance Abuse and Violence Prevention (WASAVP) is currently engaging statewide substance abuse prevention and treatment leaders to coordinate marijuana prevention strategies. Strategies we are working on include provisions contained in I-502 such as advertising restrictions; minor in possession laws; enforcement of home grows; future tax rate adjustment recommendations, and more. In addition to the provisions contained in I-502 we are working to strengthen policies that have proven to reduce youth substance abuse . . .
“Although legalization will put substantial new pressures on Washington kids to use marijuana, there are substance abuse prevention experts across the state fighting to keep marijuana from going the way of cigarettes in the 1950s and becoming a normal part of daily life in Washington,” says WASAVP President, Derek Franklin.
Below are FAQs important for youth and parents to know as legalization begins on Dec. 6, 2012:
Marijuana use remains illegal for those under 21: Know the law–providing marijuana to a minor is a felony under I-502. Smoking marijuana in public is illegal. Although adults can possess up to one ounce, it remains illegal to purchase recreational marijuana until Dec. 1, 2013.
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Potency: Marijuana today can be 4-5 times more potent than marijuana in the 60’s and 70’s.1 Medical marijuana is not safer marijuana – adults with “green cards” selling marijuana to kids are dealing drugs.
Marijuana “Edibles”: Under I-502, edibles (marijuana infused products) are legal. These include brownies, candy, flavored beverages, etc.—many that appeal to youth.
IQ loss: Heavy marijuana use before age 18 (4 times/week) can result in permanent IQ loss, even after stopping marijuana use for years.2
Lack of initiative, energy, and focus: Academic performance decreases significantly among marijuana users.3
4 Workplace drug testing does not change under legalization.
Driving Under the Influence of Drugs: There is zero tolerance for youth driving under the influence of marijuana. Marijuana is the most common illegal substance in traffic fatalities involving drug use.5
Health risks: Marijuana use increases the chance of schizophrenia6 and heart attack.7 The amount of tar in marijuana smoke is three times as high as cigarettes and poses risks of lung disease.8
Addiction and dependence: Approximately 1 in 9 who ever smoke marijuana will become dependent; chances increase to 1 in 6 among youth.9
1 J Forensic Sci, September 2010, Vol. 55, No. 5, doi: 10.1111/j.1556-4029.2010.01441.x
2 Duke Transdisciplinary Prevention Research Center, Center for Child and Family Policy, Department of Psychology and Neuroscience, and Institute for Genome Sciences and Policy. “Persistent cannabis users show neuropsychological decline from childhood to midlife.”, Duke University, Durham, NC 27708. Available: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed?term=persistent%20cannabis%20users%20and%20meier
3 National Institute on Drug Abuse, “Marijuana: Facts Parents Need to Know.” 2011. Available: http://www.nida.nih.gov/marijbroch/parents/001.php
4 Office of Applied Studies, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). SAMHSA’s National Household Survey on Drug Abuse Report—Marijuana Use among Youths. July 19, 2002. Available at http://www.samhsa.gov/oas.nhsda.htm
5 National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Drug Involvement of Fatally Injured Drivers. U.S. Department of Transportation Report No. DOT HS 811 415. Washington, DC: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 2010
6 National Institute on Drug Abuse. (2010, November). NIDA Facts. Rockville, MD: U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, National Institutes of Health, National Institute on Drug Abuse. Available: http://www.drugabuse.gov/sites/default/files/marijuana_0.pdf
7 Lindsay AC, Foale RA, Warren O, Henry JA: Cannabis as a precipitant of cardiovascular emergencies. Int J Cardiol 2005, 104(2):230-2. Available: http://www.casesjournal.com/content/2/1/208
8 Tzu-Chin WU, M.D., Donald P. Tashkin, M.D., Behnam Djahed, M.D., and Jed E. Rose, Ph.D.N Engl J Med 1988; 318:347-351 “Pulmonary Hazards of Smoking Marijuana as Compared with Tobacco” February 11, 1988. Available: http://www.nejm.org/doi/pdf/10.1056/NEJM198802113180603
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Washington Liquor Control Board I-502 Implementation Webpage
Washington Association for Substance Abuse and Violence Prevention Marijuana Toolkit
University of Washington Alcohol and Drug Abuse Institute Clearing House
Office of National Drug Control Policy Marijuana Fact Sheet
Health and Human Services Information and Referral/ Call 2-1-1 (get help for marijuana abuse)
Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America Marijuana Resource Page
9 Center for Substance Abuse Research (2010, October 25). Early marijuana use related to later illicit drug abuse and dependence. CESAR Fax, 19(11). Available: http://www.cesar.umd.edu/cesar/cesarfax/vol19/19-41.pdf