The Marijuana Report: Usage by 12 to 17 year olds


This graph shows that adolescents (ages 12-17) in states that have legalized marijuana for medical use have considerably higher rates of past-month marijuana use than teens in states that haven’t legalized “medical” pot. Alabama has the lowest rate—5%, while Rhode Island has the highest—13%.

A graph of past-month use among young adults (ages 18-25) would look almost the same except the numbers are higher. Utah has the lowest rate among young adults—11%, while Rhode Island has the highest—30%, or nearly one-third of the state’s young adults!

The adolescent graph appears on page 11 of the newly released Rocky Mountain High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area’s (HIDTA) publication, titled The Legalization of Marijuana in Colorado: The Impact, Volume 3.

Colorado and Washington state legalized recreational marijuana at the end of 2012, but neither state allowed recreational sales until 2014. The data about adolescent use are from 2013, one year before full legalization was implemented in either state. Thus, the levels of use in this graph pertain to legal “medical” pot but not to legal “recreational” pot.

What will adolescent marijuana use look like in Colorado in 2014? It will almost certainly be higher. Why? By the end of 2014, Colorado had 2,233 licensed medical marijuana dispensaries, recreational marijuana stores, growing facilities, and infused products (edibles) producers, making and selling pot in various forms throughout the state.

By the end of 2014, Colorado had licensed a total of 827 pot shops selling “medical” or “recreational” marijuana, double the number of Starbucks (405) and nearly quadruple the number of McDonald’s (227) in the state.

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Latest report on the impact of marijuana legalization/commercialization in Colorado

The High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA) has drafted a very comprehensive report showing the impact of the legalization of recreational marijuana in Colorado.

Colorado SAM

(Smart Approaches to Marijuana)


April 10, 2015- In This Issue:
New Report Highlights Failed Policy Approach

Colorado SAM Supporters,
Yesterday, the Rocky Mountain High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA)  put out its latest report on the impact of marijuana legalization/commercialization in Colorado.


As you can see, Colorado’s failed marijuana commercialization policy is negatively impacting schools, our healthcare system, youth and adults, and community safety. This is the third report from Rocky Mountain HIDTA.  The new report and copies of the previous two can be found here.


While the state continues to only put out revenue figures, the costs continue to grow. What this new report and growing data continue to show is voters in Colorado were deceived and marijuana commercialization is a failed policy approach.


Please encourage others to join our coalition to educate people about the problems of marijuana commercialization/legalization, the need to end our failed policies, and focus on a public health, science, and safety based approach.  You can send them this e-mail or encourage them to go to our web site


The latest report highlights include:

  • Impaired driving related to marijuana is increasing
  • Colorado marijuana use rates exceed the national average in every age category, including almost a third of 18-25 year olds using
  • School drug related expulsions/suspensions are up dramatically since commercialization began under the guise of medicine in 2009-10
  • Marijuana related ER visits are continuing to go up
  • Marijuana related hospital discharges (at least an overnight stay) are up
  • More marijuana calls to poison control and youth poisonings
  • Illegal diversion of marijuana continues to grow
  • Section Cynthia’s notes: (SJIPC Coordinator)
    1:  Impaired Driving 71% DUIDs involved marijuana;  41% involved only mj; and yes, more DUIDs
    2:  Youth Marijuana Use CO ranked 3rd in nation for youth use; 6.6% increase from 2013 to 2014WA is 4th (page 11)
    3:  Adult Marijuana Use College Age (18-25 years old) up 8.4%
    4:  Emergency Room and Hospital Related Admissions Page 23.  Jan-Jun 2014 data shows 1,105 emergency room visits with possible marijuana exposures.  The full year of 2013 was 873.  2014 is when the retail stores began operating.  Page 26 shows similar data for hospitalization rates related to possible marijuana exposure.
    5:  Marijuana Related Exposure 70% increase when the marijuana retail businesses began operating. Note the age range graph on page 31, and the graph showing a 400% increase in the number of THC infused edible exposures.
    6:  Treatment Current data not yet available.  References Volume 2 report.
    7:  Diversion of Colorado Marijuana Colorado marijuana interdiction seizures increased 592%, from yearly seizures of 52, to 360 in 2014. (pages 35/36).  An excellent map on page 38 showing states to which Colorado marijuana was destined in 2014. Lots of pot going elsewhere.
    8:  Diversion by Parcel 2033% increase from 2010 to 2014 for the number of parcels with CO marijuana destined for other states.  55% increase from 2013 to 2014 when the retail stores opened. Page 39
    9:  THC Extraction Labs From 0 in 2010 to 2012 to 32 in 2014.  Page 41  Same for injuries
    10:  Related Data Increase in unlawful public display/consumption of marijuana.$52.5 million in tax revenue from marijuana taxes in 2014.

    Alcohol consumption will be decreased is debunked (page 46)

    Edible units sold in 2014: 1.9 million for medical edible, and 2.8 million of recreational edible products.   (page 49)

    See for links to the previous years’ reports Remember this is a draft.  If interested, you will see that the 2013 report is 166 pages long and volume 1 is 66 pages.
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New CADCA Website is launched!

Building drug-free communities.

CADCA Takes Part in Critical Dialogue on Reducing Drug Use Around the World at 58th Session of UN Commission on Narcotic Drugs

In March 2015, Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America (CADCA) joins leaders from over 50 countries at the 58th session of the United Nations Commission on Narcotic Drugs (CND) in Vienna, Austria to discuss a comprehensive approach to reducing drug use around the world.

The CND, which is composed of 53 member countries, is the principal policy-making body within the UN system on drug control issues. CADCA is one of a few U.S.-based non-government organizations (NGO) that have consultative status with the UN and is a member of the Vienna NGO Committee.

Throughout the week, CADCA will take part in plenary meetings, side meetings and informal discussions highlighting the community coalition model as an effective approach to reducing drug use and its related problems. CADCA will also emphasize the importance of maintaining the UN drug conventions, which are scheduled for review in 2016 at a special session on drugs of the United Nations General Assembly in New York.

“CADCA is honored to be joining such a distinct group of leaders at this important event. Throughout the week, we are stressing the importance of a community-based approach to preventing and reducing illicit drug use. We are also encouraging member countries to uphold the UN drug conventions as they currently stand,” said Gen. Arthur T. Dean, CADCA Chairman and CEO. “The CND is also an opportunity for the CADCA team to meet face-to-face with leaders from many of the countries where we are training and supporting coalition development.”

CADCA is presenting at two important side events – the U.S.-sponsored “Innovations in Youth Drug Prevention” and in “A Public Health Approach to Drug Policy” sponsored by Europe Against Drugs. CADCA will also brief Yury Fedotov, Executive Director of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) on our coalition strategy and efforts throughout the world.

CADCA’s delegation includes CADCA’s Gen. Arthur T. Dean; Dr. Eduardo Hernandez, CADCA’s Vice President of International Programs; Sue Thau, CADCA’s Public Policy Consultant; Irina Broughton with CADCA’s International Programs; and Abdelwahhab Ahmad Alawneh, a CADCA training consultant.

CADCA currently works with countries in five continents, helping them form community coalitions to address their local substance abuse problems.

About Cadca

CADCA (Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America), is the national membership organization representing over 5,000 coalitions and affiliates working to make America’s communities safe, healthy and drug-free. CADCA’s mission is to strengthen the capacity of community coalitions by providing technical assistance and training, public policy advocacy, media strategies and marketing programs, conferences, and special events.

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What Will Legal Marijuana Cost Employers?


Paper Addresses Impact of Legalized Marijuana on Employers
Atlanta, Ga.  March 30, 2015 – What effect will legalized marijuana have on employers?  National Families in Action, a drug policy and education organization, is releasing a White Paper that examines problems employers are facing in states that have legalized marijuana for medical or retail use.

The paper addresses how marijuana laws are changing, how these laws will affect employers’ ability to conduct business, and what employers can do to protect that ability. It was written by Sue Rusche, president and CEO of National Families in Action and Kevin Sabet, PhD, president and cofounder of SAM (Smart Approaches to Marijuana). Guided by an advisory group of experts representing diverse fields, from employment law to occupational nursing to company executives to drug policy, the White Paper asks tough questions informed by events transpiring in legal marijuana states.

The paper addresses issues such as:
•    Will employers be able to maintain a drug-free workplace?
•    How will employers accommodate employees who use medical marijuana?
•    How can employers with employees in multiple states comply with drug laws
that differ from state to state?
•    Will employers be able to shift employees who use marijuana to other jobs?
•    Will employers have an adequate supply of qualified workers?

Lawsuits have already begun in states with legalized marijuana as employees try to establish various rights that clash with employers’ commitments to maintain drug-free workplaces mandated by federal funding and federal contracts, to conduct business with conflicting laws from state to state, and to protect employees and the public from the consequences of increased marijuana use and related problems.

The White Paper examines some of these lawsuits and provides a scientific evaluation of the consequences of marijuana use to alert employers about what lies ahead if marijuana is fully legalized. It also suggests steps employers can take to protect safety, productivity, and the bottom line.

What Will Legal Marijuana Cost Employers can be found on National Families in Action’s website here.

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Next Board of Trustees Meeting: April 24th, 2015

Come join us for a light lunch starting at 11:30am at the Friday Harbor Presbyterian Church and the meeting starts at 12noon-2pm. Please RSVP 378-9683, so we can have enough food for everyone.

Interested in Prevention issues for our community? Here is a chance to get in the dialogue and see what the SJIPC is currently involved in, where we are headed and how you might get involved…Thank you!

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Marijuana-It’s NOT so Natural…

Spread the Facts. Visit

Natural Marijuana

  • Rarely used and not desired
  • Grows on its own in nature, with seeds
  • Little-to-no intoxication
  • Slang Terms: Crap, Garbage, Bad
  • Approx. 1% THC, 1% CBD

Man-Made Marijuana

  • Most used and desired
  • Chemically manipulated, no seeds
  • Significant intoxication high
  • Slang terms: Bud, Sticky, Dank, Good
  • Up to 37.2% THC, as low as 0.5% CBD

THC is the intoxicating component & has limited medicinal value for a smaller # of conditions. CBD is a non-intoxicating component & is valuable medicinal for a larger # of conditions. 



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Billboards to hit Seattle…

Starting next week 14 marijuana prevention billboards will post around Seattle with the theme “Talk to Your Kids” with 3 different versions featuring Seattle Children’s Hospital doctors. Here is one. We’ll continue to post the others, too. Talk to your Kids about substance use and abuse. They do listen.

Thanks so much to our partners for making this campaign possible: Seattle City Attorney’s Office, Clear Channel Outdoor, King County Alcohol and Other Drug Prevention Programs, DSHS/DBHR, Central Area Drug Free Communities Coalition, Coalition for Drug Free Youth/Navos, the Prevention WINS Coalition/Children’s Hospital, WAPI Community Services, Healthy King County Coalition, SE Seattle PEACE Coalition, Mercer Island Youth and Family Services, Lao Khmu Community, Rainier Vista Boys and Girls Club, Aki Kurose Middle School (apologies if I forgot anyone!).

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New Study on Teens and Marijuana…Poor Long-Term Memory

Teen cannabis users have poor long-term memory in adulthood

The hippocampus is important to long-term memory (also known as episodic memory), which is the ability to remember autobiographical or life events.

The brain abnormalities and memory problems were observed during the individuals’ early twenties, two years after they stopped smoking marijuana.

Young adults who abused cannabis as teens performed about 18 percent worse on long-term memory tests than young adults who never abused cannabis.

“The memory processes that appear to be affected by cannabis are ones that we use every day to solve common problems and to sustain our relationships with friends and family,” said senior author Dr. John Csernansky, the Lizzie Gilman professor and chair of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine and Northwestern Memorial Hospital.

The study will be published March 12 in the journal Hippocampus.

The study is among the first to say the hippocampus is shaped differently in heavy marijuana smokers and the different looking shape is directly related to poor long-term memory performance. Previous studies of cannabis users have shown either the oddly shaped hippocampus or poor long-term memory but none have linked them.

Previous research by the same Northwestern team showed poor short-term and working memory performance and abnormal shapes of brain structures in the sub-cortex including the striatum, globus pallidus and thalamus.

“Both our recent studies link the chronic use of marijuana during adolescence to these differences in the shape of brain regions that are critical to memory and that appear to last for at least a few years after people stop using it,” said lead study author Matthew Smith, assistant professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at the Feinberg School of Medicine.

The longer the individuals were chronically using marijuana, the more abnormal the shape of their hippocampus, the study reports. The findings suggest that these regions related to memory may be more susceptible to the effects of the drug the longer the abuse occurs.

The abnormal shape likely reflects damage to the hippocampus and could include the structure’s neurons, axons or their supportive environments.

“Advanced brain mapping tools allowed us to examine detailed and sometimes subtle changes in small brain structures, including the hippocampus,” said Lei Wang, also a senior study author and an assistant professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at Feinberg. The scientists used computerized programs they developed with collaborators that performed fine mappings between structural MRIs of different individuals’ brains.

Subjects took a narrative memory test in which they listened to a series of stories for about one minute, then were asked to recall as much content as possible 20 to 30 minutes later. The test assessed their ability to encode, store, and recall details from the stories.

The groups in the study started using marijuana daily between 16 to 17 years of age for about three years. At the time of the study, they had been marijuana free for about two years. A total of 97 subjects participated, including matched groups of healthy controls, subjects with a marijuana use disorder, schizophrenia subjects with no history of substance use disorders, and schizophrenia subjects with a marijuana use disorder. The subjects who used marijuana did not abuse other drugs.

The study also found that young adults with schizophrenia who abused cannabis as teens performed about 26 percent more poorly on memory tests than young adults with schizophrenia who never abused cannabis.

In the U.S., marijuana is the most commonly used illicit drug, and young adults have the highest — and growing — prevalence of use. Decriminalization of the drug may lead to greater use. Four states have legalized marijuana for recreational use, and 23 states plus Washington D.C. have legalized it for medical use.

Because the study results examined one point in time, a longitudinal study is needed to definitively show if marijuana is responsible for the observed differences in the brain and memory impairment, Smith said.

“It is possible that the abnormal brain structures reveal a pre-existing vulnerability to marijuana abuse,” Smith said. “But evidence that the longer the participants were abusing marijuana, the greater the differences in hippocampus shape suggests marijuana may be the cause.”

Other Northwestern authors include senior author Hans C. Breiter and coauthors Derin J. Cobia, James L. Reilly, Andrea G. Roberts and Kathryn I. Alpert.

The study was funded by the National Institute of Mental Health of the National Institutes of Health, grants R01 MH056584 and P50 MH071616.

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Every 15 Minutes is Coming April 21-22, 2015 (Videos from 2009 Event in Friday Harbor)


2009 Every 15 Minutes, a drunk driving prevention program, organized by San Juan Island EMS for the community of San Juan Island, WA.
Schools that participated: Friday Harbor High School & Spring Street International School.

Part 2

Part 3

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FDA Warning Letters sent out to CBD companies



 Dear Friends,We recently got word that the FDA has sent warning letters to CBD companies about marketing an unapproved drug. This is the first time FDA has intervened to our knowledge in this way.

Your products are not generally recognized as safe and effective for the above referenced uses and, therefore, these products are ‘new drugs,’“ the FDA wrote to CBD Life Holdings in Arizona. “New drugs may not be legally introduced or delivered for introduction into interstate commerce without prior approval from the FDA…You should take prompt action to correct the violations cited in this letter.”


Similar letters were sent to Hemp Oil Care in California, Twin Falls Bio Tech in South Carolina, and three Washington State companies:, Canna Pet, and Canna Companion.

The warning letters can be found here. 

Let’s hope this is a sign of more intervention to come.


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