From: Mike Elliott, MMIG
To: Scott Jenkins,
Subject: Teen Marijuana Use Stagnant in 2013, CDC Data
Date: Fri Jun 13 13:45:10 MDT 2014
MMIG Email Header 2011

Teen Marijuana Usage Remains Stagnant Nationwide


More data has been released demonstrating that marijuana reform has little to no impact on teen marijuana usage. 


The Center for Disease Control has released data showing that from 2011 to 2013, the years when the states of Washington and Colorado both legalized marijuana, teen marijuana usage remained virtually unchanged (2011: 23.1, 2013: 23.4) in the United States.    


You can access the full CDC survey here.


Teens are using less alcohol, cigarettes, and illegal drugs. 

In 2013, the CDC data demonstrates that teens are using less alcohol, cigarettes, cocaine, hallucinogenic drugs, inhalants, ecstasy, heroin, methamphetamines, steroids, and prescription drugs obtained without a prescription.      


Colorado Info

The CDC survey did not report Colorado specific data for 2013.


However, the CDC data from 2009 to 2011 showed that Colorado's teen use rate decreased 2.8% during the time when Colorado licensed nearly 500 medical marijuana centers in 2010.



Preventing teen marijuana usage remains a top priority for our trade association. Last November, we led the effort to raise taxes on Colorado marijuana sales.  We did so to help ensure that Colorado has sufficient revenue to fully enforce the state marijuana law and promote public safety. Several million dollars of this tax revenue will be dedicated to preventing teen marijuana usage.




Links to More Studies


"Legalizing medical marijuana doesn't increase use among adolescents, study says.Science Daily, April 23rd, 2014.  The study will soon be published in the Journal of Adolescent Health.  

"Study Summary: Parents and physicians concerned about an increase in adolescents' marijuana use following the legalization of medical marijuana can breathe a sigh of relief.  According to a new study that compared 20 years worth of data from states with and without medical marijuana laws, legalizing the drug did not lead to increased use among adolescents."  


" Teen marijuana use hasn't exploded amid boom in legalization support, drug survey finds." By Steven Nelson, US News & World Report.  December 18, 2013. 


"Medical Marijuana Laws and Teen Use," by D Mark Anderson, Daniel Rees, Benjamin Hanson, May 2012. 

Summary: "Our results are not consistent with the hypothesis that legalization leads to increased use of marijuana by teenagers."


"National level drug policy and young people's illicit drug use." by Vuolo M.  2012

Conclusion: "[E]liminating punishments for possession for personal use is not associated with higher drug use." 



Colorado Specific Data from CDC, 2009 to 2011


1.Colorado: Youth marijuana usage in Colorado went down 2.8% (24.8% to 22%) from 2009 to 2011.

2.National: Youth marijuana usage nationwide went up 2.3% (20.8% to 23.1%) from 2009 to 2011.

3.National v. Colorado: Even with 500 medical marijuana centers, youth usage in Colorado fell below                        the national average in 2011 (23.1% US v. 22.0% CO).

Availability of drugs on school grounds

1.                     Colorado: Colorado went down 5% (22.7% to 17.2%) from 2009 to 2011.

2.                     National: Nationwide went up almost 3% (22.7% to 25.6%) from 2009 to 2011.

3.                     National v. ColoradoIn 2011, Colorado is 8.4% lower than the national average (25.6% to                            17.2%).



Interesting Articles:


 "Teen Marijuana Use May Show No Effect on Brain Tissue, Unlike Alcohol, Study Finds."By Kathleen Miles, Huffington Post: 12-23-12.


"The Media's Absurd Hysteria about Teens and Pot" -  By Paul Armentano, 12-18-13.


"Graduation Rates Up in Colorado." - Denver Post, 1-23-2014. 

 "No, Marijuana Isn't a Gateway Drug" - by German Lopez, Vox, 5-15-14.


Mike Elliott


Executive Director 

Marijuana Industry Group


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