Teen Marijuana Use Lower
Report Says Teen Marijuana Use Lower in States That Have Approved Medical Marijuana

  See the full report, Marijuana Use by Young People: The Impact of State Medical Marijuana Laws (PDF)
  See Results from the 2004 National Survey on Drug Use and Health: National Findings (PDF)

A report commissioned and funded by the Marijuana Policy Project has concluded that teen marijuana use is significantly lower in those states that have approved the use of medical marijuana.

The study is based on data from national and state surveys, which show a drop in marijuana use by teens.

The report, "Marijuana Use by Young People: the Impact Of State Medical Marijuana Laws" by Mitch Earleywine, PhD, Associate Professor of Psychology, University at Albany, State University of New York and Karen O'Keefe, Esq., Legislative Analyst, Marijuana Policy Project, concludes the following:

"[A] considerable body of data shows that no state with a medical marijuana law has experienced an increase in youth marijuana use since their law's enactment. All have reported overall decreases of more than the national average decrease -- exceeding 50% in some age groups -- strongly suggesting that enactment of state medical marijuana laws does not increase teen marijuana use."
Sep. 2005 Mitch Earleywine, PhD & Karen O'Keefe, Esq.

The White House Office of National Drug Control Policy was quoted as follows in a Sep. 7, 2005 Los Angeles Times article by Eric Bailey, "Pot Use Down Where Medical Use OK":

"Tom Riley, of the president's Office of National Drug Control Policy, said the drop in teen drug use across the nation is attributable to the federal anti-drug advertising campaign in recent years, including $125 million spent during the federal fiscal year that ends Oct. 1.

Medical marijuana has only clouded that pitch, he said.

'It's foolish to give kids a message that marijuana can be helpful to them,' Riley said, adding that all Americans "should be glad that teen drug use is going down. If the drug legalizers are recognizing that, too, I think that says something.'"
Sep. 7, 2005 Office of National Drug Control Policy

  Read more from this report about whether or not medical marijuana laws send the wrong message, as well as more on whether or not legalizing medical marijuana has led to increased drug abuse among children and adolescents.