USA: Smart Approaches to Marijuana – July News Update

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News Roundup

July 2018
The SAM family has been growing and expanding over the last month. New office in Manhattan, new, talented teammates in Michigan…we are working hard to make a difference for public health.

New Poll: More Than Half of New Yorkers Oppose Marijuana Legalization Healthy and Productive Michigan Holds Discussions on Social Justice Impact of Marijuana Legalization
A recent poll conducted by Emerson College found that a majority of New Yorkers do not support the full legalization of marijuana. A plurality support either decriminalization or the current policy.
A previous New York poll commissioned by pro-marijuana legalization groups pushed the false dichotomy of there only being two options in marijuana policy – full legalization or full prohibition. When respondents are informed of current marijuana laws (legal for medical use and decriminalized) support for legalization drops 27% from those polls.
“New Yorkers do not support pot legalization. This poll shows us that elected officials need to slow down,” said Dr. Kevin Sabet.
SAM Action Outreach Associate Will Jones joined Healthy and Productive Michigan to discuss the impact marijuana legalization would have on communities of color.
“People often say we should regulate marijuana like alcohol and that’s actually what frightens me,” said Jones. To see a video highlighting more about how marijuana legalization would harm these communities, click here.
Healthy and Productive Michigan also recently welcomed former Obama for America campaigner Abu Edwards to the team. Abu, who is coming on as the Detroit Field Director, joins Matthew Yascolt, a longtime prevention advocate, in pushing back against Big Marijuana in Michigan.
Abu brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the fight for public health. As one of five children raised by a single mother, Mr. Edwards is filled with a burning passion to help those who struggle in poverty by fighting for societal reforms that benefit disadvantaged communities.


SAM Issues Comprehensive Rebuttal to Study Recommending Marijuana Legalization in New York State

SAM met with its award-winning science advisory board to review the recent study out of New York that recommended the state legalize marijuana. After review, the board found a whole host of major flaws with the study.
In response, SAM released a comprehensive rebuttal and also formally submitted a FOIL (Freedom of Information Law) request to the New York State Department of Health for all records related to their marijuana report.
“Why weren’t addiction medicine doctors or the state’s medical association consulted with on this so-called scientific report?” said Dr. Kevin Sabet. “The NYS report reads more like a marijuana industry lobbyist’s manifesto than a research-based document.”
To read the comprehensive rebuttal, please click here.

SAM Action Opens New Office in Manhattan
In response to the efforts of the marijuana industry to expand into the Empire State, SAM Action and its New York affiliate, SAM-NY is happy to announce the opening of a new office in the historic West Village of Manhattan. This office will serve as a critical center of collaboration and work for SAM Action and SAM-NY.
“SAM has now grown to almost a dozen employees around the country, and we are thrilled to be able to plant a flag in the historic West Village neighborhood of New York. New Yorkers are tired of living with secondhand marijuana smoke, among other problems,” said Kevin Sabet.
The SAM family has successfully worked hard across the river in New Jersey this year to thwart marijuana commercialization and we intend to do the same in New York,” said Sabet. “I look forward to the ways this new office space will allow our team to expand in ways we’ve never been able to before to better push back against Big Marijuana.”

New Data From Washington State Show Marijuana Legalization Leads to Massive Increase in Youth Exposure to the Substance

House Rules Committee Shuts Down Two Marijuana Industry-Backed Amendments

Marijuana legalization has led to massive increases in youth exposure to the substance, according the 2017 Annual Toxic Trend Report compiled by the Washington Poison Center.
In 2017, there were 378 total marijuana exposures reported to the Washington State Poison Center. This number is an all-time high for reported marijuana exposures and is an increase of 87 incidents from the previous year.
“This report is extremely troubling,” said Dr. Kevin Sabet, president and founder of Smart Approaches to Marijuana (SAM). “As Big Marijuana continues to churn out kid-friendly edibles, more and more young children are ending up in emergency rooms.”
Members of the House Rules Committee recently blocked two pro-marijuana industry amendments from consideration. This marks the 34th time pro-pot amendments have been blocked by the House Rules Committee and joins the dozens of failed efforts to loosen marijuana laws this Congress.
The first amendment would have allowed the marijuana industry access to the federal banking system and the second would have allowed the District of Columbia to begin commercial sales of the drug.
“This is a win for public health,” said Dr. Kevin Sabet.


SAM is Proud to Announce the Addition of Ben Cort to the 2018 SAM Summit

We are proud to announce that Mr. Ben Cort has been added to the lineup of speakers at the 2018 SAM Summit. Ben is an excellent addition to the already packed agenda for the day. The author of Weed Inc., an expert on addiction treatment, and member of the SAM Board of Directors, Ben will speak on Colorado’s commercialization effects from first-hand experiences while living there.
Featured Speakers
  • Candace Lightner, Founder & CEO of WeSaveLives
  • James Francois-Hays & Charmaine O. Francois-Hays, Compton Community Organizers
  • Roneet Lev, MD FACEP, Chief, Emergency Department, Scripps Mercy Hospital San Diego
  • Dana Stevens, Grassroots Coordinator, SAM & HighMeansDUI
  • Corinne Gasper, Drugged-Driving Advocate
  • Bari K. Platter, MS, RN, PMHCN-BC, Clinical Nurse Specialist, the Center for Dependency, Addiction, and Rehabilitation – University of Colorado Health
  • Kevin Sabet, PhD, Founder and President, Smart Approaches to Marijuana
Topics to be Covered:
  • Lessons Learned from Marijuana Legalization
  • Community Activism – Fighting Back Big Marijuana
  • Federal Policy Update
  • Adverse Effects on Health Outcomes
  • Marijuana-impaired Driving
  • Marijuana Legalization’s Harms on Social Justice Efforts
We have a very limited amount of discounted tickets!
If your organization would like to sponsor the summit,  email us at  [email protected]
for more information on how to get involved.

Big Marijuana Comes to Wall Street
SAM Founder Dr. Kevin Sabet Sits Down With Cheddar
The marijuana industry has broken into new territory now that Canadian marijuana growing company Tilray has been listed on the New York Stock Exchange.
This marks the first time a marijuana growing company has completed an initial public offering on the U.S. stock exchange. The IPO is the latest example of large, internationally run marijuana corporations being listed on U.S. markets, following the listings of Canopy Growth in May and Cronos Group in February of 2018.
“It is unconscionable – and illegal – to promote the production and commercialization of pot candies, cookies, and other edibles in the US market. We are calling on NASDAQ to immediately stop working with Tilray and other marijuana companies.”
SAM founder and president Dr. Kevin Sabet recently sat down with Alex Heath of Cheddar at the Sun Valley Conference in Idaho, a gathering of the world’s top leaders in business and innovation.
“Sometimes I feel like I’m waking up, not in 2018, but in 1918 ー but with tobacco, when we had a relatively new industry that had a product that’s been around for a long time but that they started marketing and developing into something addictive,” said Dr. Sabet.
Click the link below to check out the full interview!


Contemporary Health Issues on Marijuana :
New Book Co-Edited by Dr. Kevin Sabet Available Now

Hot off the presses of Oxford University, Contemporary Health Issues on Marijuana  is now available for purchase.
This new book, co-edited by Drs. Kevin A. Sabet and Ken C. Winters, comprises chapters by other experts hailing from a wide range of fields including psychology, epidemiology, medicine, and criminal justice. It is a balanced, data-driven volume highlighting new theory and clinical evidence pertaining to marijuana.
The volume features a comprehensive review of research into marijuana’s impact on public health, including how it affects cognitive and neurological functioning, its medical effects, suggested treatment approaches for marijuana use disorders, marijuana smoking and lung function, and marijuana-impaired driving.
Supplies are limited, so place your order today


Big Marijuana is borrowing the playbook of Big Tobacco in search of the same deep profits at the expense of addicted users. It is time to combat their game with the facts! To help you do so, Smart Approaches to Marijuana (SAM) has partnered with Communities for Alcohol and Drug Free Youth (CADY) to offer a comprehensive media campaign prevention toolkit.


As always, thank you for being a SAM supporter. If you can, please chip-in with a small donation by clicking here.


If you can’t chip-in, then at the very least,  and help grow the SAM community.


In Health,


Colton Grace


Communications Associate


Smart Approaches to Marijuana


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