SAM Issues Rebuttal to New York State Marijuana Legalization Document

Clubs and Organizations

August 2, 2018


Smart Approaches to Marijuana Issues Comprehensive Rebuttal to New York State Report Recommending Marijuana Legalization

Group formally submits Freedom of Information Law (FOIL) request to obtain sources that contributed to the creation of the New York State report released by the Department of Health endorsing legalization

(New York, New York) - August1,2018 Smart Approaches to Marijuana (SAM), in coordination with its award-winning science advisory board and its New York State Affiliate, SAM-NY, released a comprehensive rebuttal to the report released by the New York Department of Health recommending the legalization of marijuana for recreational sales. SAM's analysis - reviewed by top scientists from Harvard to Johns Hopkins - found several major flaws in the NYS-issued report and calls into question its bases and conclusions.

Click here to read the comprehensive, peer-reivewed rebuttal.

"Why weren't addiction medicine doctors or the state's medical association consulted with on this so-called scientific report?" said Dr. Kevin Sabet, founder and president of SAM, and a former Obama administration advisor. "The NYS report reads more like a marijuana industry lobbyist's manifesto than a research-based document. This manifesto is so one-sided that SAM today formally submitted a FOIL request asking the state to disclose all its sources and any ties to the Big Marijuana industry."
The report claims that marijuana reduces pain and opioid dependence. In reality, multiple studies have found that marijuana is not an effective treatment for chronic pain. Actually, use of the drug has in some cases made the pain worse.
Additionally, the report claims that marijuana legalization is not increasing crime around marijuana facilities. To the contrary, studies have shown that increased gang violence and other indicators of crime are on the rise in communities near dispensaries.
The report also glosses over major public health and safety data showing increased use among some teens in Colorado, increased risk of DUI in legalized states, increased minority arrests for marijuana in Colorado, and other key data.

Earlier this year, SAM's advisory board released a comprehensive report analyzing early data from Colorado and several other legalized states.

About SAM

Smart Approaches to Marijuana (SAM) is a nonpartisan, non-profit alliance of physicians, policy makers, prevention workers, treatment and recovery professionals, scientists, and other concerned citizens opposed to marijuana legalization who want health and scientific evidence to guide marijuana policies. SAM has affiliates in more than 30 states. For more information about marijuana use and its effects, visit www.learnaboutsam.org