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Mohini Venkatesh

, National Council for Behavioral Health

National Council and Friends of NIDA Sponsor Congressional Briefing on Marijuana

June 18, 2014 | Addictions | Comments
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The National Council, through its membership with the Friends of the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), will sponsor a June 19 Congressional briefing highlighting trends in marijuana use rates over the past decade and the latest research on the health effects of marijuana use. Marijuana is the most common illicit drug used in the United States. After a period of decline in the last decade, its use has been increasing among young people since 2007, corresponding to a diminishing perception of the drug’s risks that may be associated with increased public debate over the drug’s legal status. Although the federal government considers marijuana a Schedule I substance (having no medicinal uses and high risk for abuse), Colorado and Washington state have legalized marijuana for adult recreational use, and 21 states have passed laws allowing its use for specific therapeutic purposes. Marijuana abuse can impact both physical and mental health, and can have a variety of additional societal impacts.

Speakers include Dr. Wilson Compton, Deputy Director of NIDA, Dr. Robert Booth, Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Colorado School of Medicine, and Former Congressman Patrick J. Kennedy. This briefing is being offered in conjunction with the House Addiction, Treatment and Recovery Caucus.