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Consumption of alcohol, tobacco and illegal psychoactive substances, mainly cannabis, have increased in the last five years in Portugal, according to a study by the Intervention Service for Addictive Behaviours and Dependencies (SICAD). "We have seen a rise in the prevalence of alcohol and tobacco consumption and of every illicit psychoactive substance (essentially affected by the weight of cannabis use in the population aged 15-74) between 2012 and 2016/17, according to the 4thNational Survey on the Use of Psychoactive Substances in the General Population, Portugal 2016/17.

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Decriminalisation increases consumption – Increases risk of harm with every psychotropic toxin taking episode!

This article examines this idiosyncratic approach to the criminalisation of drug driving, highlighting its weak correlation with the important road safety objective of deterring substance-impaired driving, and the risks of both over- and under-criminalisation that it creates. It argues that public policy on the prohibition of certain drugs and the criminalisation of their use should be disentangled from public policy on impaired driving. It recommends that drug driving laws in all Australian jurisdictions should be brought back into line with drink driving laws, via legislation and testing practices that turn on substance-specific prescribed concentrations for all drugs (illicit and licit) that have the potential to impair drivers.

That the goals of improving road safety and reducing road accidents and trauma are valid and important is axiomatic. Accordingly, and alongside other measures, the detection of individuals who are driving under the influence of substances that are known to diminish driver capacity is entirely meritorious. The aim of this article is not to question the legitimacy of these objectives, but to scrutinise and produce fresh insights about the way that the criminal law is configured and deployed to this end. Specifically, it investigates whether current drug driving laws and random drug testing (RDT) practices are consistent with the evidence‐based impairment paradigm that has underpinned the success of random breath testing (RBT) and drink driving offences in transforming driving under the influence of alcohol from a common practice to a highly stigmatised criminal behaviour (Terer and Brown 2014). By producing new knowledge about the character of contemporary drug driving laws, we aim to identify reform options that will allow drug driving laws to share the combination of social acceptance, evidence‐based legitimacy and effectiveness that are widely regarded as the hallmarks of drink driving laws  

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Wow! Check this out! These  people are just openly admitting that they will sell to the black market in CA. Do these people  expect us to feel sorry for them that decades long businesses of growing and selling pot ILLEGALLY (clearly drug dealers!!!) is going up in smoke because of legalization???? This is so amazingly absurd that it’s hard to believe it’s real. They cry when marijuana is illegal and now they are complaining that making it legal is too much of a hardship for them to follow through on. 

Legalizing Weed creates three markets, now -  ‘legal’  - ‘Grey’ -  ‘Illegal’ (unregulated)… so much for ‘legalizing marijuana will stop the illegal trade!' mantra!

From the Article 

“It’s putting us in a situation where if we’re not able to sell to that market any more we’re having to find new, illegal channels in a saturated market,” says June. “We would either have to shut down or find new avenues of sale on the black market or the unregulated market.”

“It’s been a lot more difficult than we thought,” says Shivawn Brady, operations director for an Illinois-based medical cannabis company called Justice Grown that operates a farm in Sonoma County. She urges financial assistance to be given to smaller-scale growers, noting a single permit can cost $10,000 to $20,000 – not to mention land use requirements that can compel people to relocate. “It’s hurting a lot of people,” she says.

Brandon Levine, director of a dispensary called Mercy Wellness, says he doubts 10 per cent of the hundreds of growers he currently works with will be able to get licensed. 

“There won’t be legal outlets for all the people that cultivate and have gone to dispensaries, so the black market is going to explode,” Levine says, calling the situation “hugely urgent”.

Suppressing the black market was a central argument for proponents of legalisation, who argued that legal outlets would undercut the illicit trade. While it is an open secret in marijuana country that the black market absorbs some of what is grown, many cultivators have embraced legalisation as a way to come out of hiding and grow conscientiously, touting environmental protections and a way to finally jettison the ever-present threat of prosecution. 

But some of them won’t be able to get their products into the regulated market, and “people who work with dispensaries and can’t get permitted aren’t going to stop growing,” says Sonoma cultivator Julie Terry, voicing a widely shared sentiment.

“Many, many people will not be in that regulated market,” says Sam Magruder, a Sonoma County grower who has sunk millions into obtaining properly zoned land and getting it up to code for his growing operation. 

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More than 2,000 "junior junkie" babies have been born addicted to drugs including heroin, cocaine and cannabis in the past five years, heartbreaking figures reveal.

The shocking scandal of youngsters arriving in the world already hooked on hard drugs is laid bare after an investigation into neonatal abstinence syndrome.

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Kate Kelland

LONDON (Reuters) - People who smoke marijuana have a three times greater risk of dying from hypertension, or high blood pressure, than those who have never used the drug, scientists said on Wednesday.

The risk grows with every year of use, they said. The findings, from a study of some 1,200 people, could have implications in the United States among other countries. Several states have legalized marijuana and others are moving toward it. It is decriminalized in a number of other countries.

“Support for liberal marijuana use is partly due to claims that it is beneficial and possibly not harmful to health,” said Barbara Yankey, who co-led the research at the school of public health at Georgia State University in the United States.

The results showed marijuana users had a 3.42-times higher risk of death from hypertension than non-users, and a 1.04 greater risk for each year of use. (European Journal of Preventive Cardiology)

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