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Monday, January 30, 2023

How Newly Legalized Cannabis Threatens New Yorkers

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Our state will collapse, literally. Yesterday the state started issuing licenses for the legal sale of marijuana. But the effects of legalization can already be felt. We smell it everywhere. Kids think it’s cooler than ever. And an industry bent on maximizing the potency of weed laughs all the way to the bank while consumers drink Kool-Aid.

Our nation’s leaders are not acting like they think any of this is a problem. that it.

Last month, the Office of Cannabis Management (OCM) announced Guidelines for the regulation of recreational dispensaries. While there are a few sensible policies — such as trying to prevent at least packages of marijuana from attracting young people and preventing pot stores from advertising to minors — many others are insufficient. It’s been 10 years since the state legalized marijuana, and a lot has been learned. New York politics were not formulated to avoid the same mistakes.

OCM requires that dispensaries be at least 500 feet from schools and 200 feet from “houses of worship.” Many other pot-friendly states — including Colorado and Oregon — require dispensaries to be at least 1,000 feet from schools. More young people will walk through infirmaries on their way to school because of the New York buffer zone, and shops may be visible from the school playground and classrooms.

Today’s bowl is not a weak Woodstock weed. despite of Unprecedented increases in marijuana potency THCHowever, the state chose not to set an effective cap, unlike in Vermont and Connecticut. The science on high-potency marijuana is clear: the higher the potency, the higher the risk.

High potency marijuana is associated with cannabis use disorder — addiction — and psychosis, among other adverse effects. However, thanks to OCM’s failure to regulate it, dispensaries will sell almost 95% of their THC on the street away from schools.

Recognizing the disturbances and neighborhood crime issues that accompany commercial marijuana facilities, about half of the 1,520 municipalities. Withdrawn allow dispensaries, and 58% chose not to allow consumption sites. Withdrawal was a reasonable decision from the perspective of protecting the health of the next generation, given those studies Dispensaries show normalization of marijuana among youth And the Sell ​​products that fall into their hands.

Cities that have been signed up are allowed to organize “Time, place and method” dispensaries. Given the state’s inconvenient buffer zone, Riverhead in Suffolk County moved to require that dispensaries be 1000 feet away from schools, day care facilities, residential areas and libraries, and within 500 feet of houses of worship, parks, community centers and recreational businesses. Other municipalities should take similar steps to protect public health.

Many New Yorkers also worry that the state’s home-growth and possession laws will exacerbate crime. Adults are allowed to grow their own marijuana plants and store up to five pounds of marijuana in the home. It should come as no surprise that this marijuana would make those homes an easy target for break-ins. Other states have seen home laws Increases in related crimes.

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