Drug Free Marion County Releases Medical Marijuana Statement

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Drug Free Marion County

Medical Marijuana Position Statement


Purpose: DFMC’s vision is to have a safe and   healthy community free of substance abuse. We seek to educate our community on substance abuse issues and encourage citizens to research such topics and reach out to professionals in the field for clarification or questions. DFMC opposes the legalization of marijuana in any form for recreational use. DFMC opposes the legalization of marijuana for medical or therapeutic use until supporting, documented evidence or a medical consensus for its use in standard therapeutic practice.

Background: Efforts to legalize marijuana as medicine in the United States have grown significantly in recent years. Indiana announced it will have a summer study committee on public health, behavioral health, and human services to study  the  topic of medical  marijuana during  2018. Marijuana is classified as a Schedule 1 drug that stipulates there is a high potential for abuse and there are currently no accepted  medical uses.


The Food and Drug Administration (FDA):

Marijuana should be subject to the same research, consideration, and study as any other potential medicine. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is the sole Federal agency that approves drug products as safe and effective for intended indications. The   Federal     Food,  Dr ug, and Cosmetic (FD&C) Act requires that  new drugs be shown to be safe and effective for their intended use before being marketed in this country. FDA’s drug approval process requires well-controlled clinical trials that provide the necessary scientific data upon which FDA makes its approval and labeling decisions. If a drug product is to be marketed, then disciplined, systematic, scientifically conducted trials are the best means to obtain data to ensure that the drug  is safe and effective when used as indicated. Efforts that seek to bypass the FDA drug approval process would not serve the interests of public health because they might expose patients to unsafe and ineffective drug products. The FDA has not approved smoked marijuana for any condition or disease indication.


DFMC’s Position: Medical marijuana should be opposed until further testing and approval by the Food and Drug Administration.

  • Legalization of marijuana without more testing and regulation by the Food and Drug  Administration  could lead to the following:

o Increased  use    among  our    youth. Those who begin abusing marijuana in their youth have a 1 in 6 chance of developing marijuana dependence.1 Addiction  rates         among 12-17 year olds are among the highest levels nationally in states that have ‘”medical marijuana” programs.2 Youth use of marijuana can lead to disruption in brain development, especially in areas of memory, attention, decision-making, language, and executive function skills. DFMC supports efforts to minimize youth access to marijuana.

  • Increased
    • 20% of crashes in the S. are caused by drugged driving.3Marijuana is the most prevalent illegal drug detected in impaired drivers.
      • The Colorado Department of Transportation found that after passing “medical marijuana” legislation in the state, drivers who tested positive for marijuana in fatal crashes DOUBLED between 2006 and   In a recent study by CDOT, 34 percent of medical users said they don’t think being under the influence of marijuana affects their ability  to  drive  safely.4
    • Legal marijuana shops are linked to higher levels of property cr im


1 Wagner, F.A. & Anthony, J.C. (2002). From first drug useto drug dependence; developmental periods of risk for dependence upon marijuana, cocaine, and alcohol. Neuropsychopharmacology, 26, 479-488.

2 Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), State Estima t es from the 2008- 2009 National Surveys on Drug Use and Health

3 National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 2010.

4 https://w ww.codot.gov/ safety/ alcohol-and-impaired-driving/druggeddriving



Consideration  of  marijuana  as  medicine  should  be treated with  the same logical,  rational approach as any other drug that has demonstrated health and   safety  risks  yet  may  have some medical  benefit  (i.e. morphine from the poppy seed). The medical and scientific community establishes policy based  on   available  knowledge  while  continuing  to  conduct research on the drug to increase that knowledge base. Anything less puts the safety  and   health of the general public at   risk.

Drug Free Marion County does not support marijuana as medicine. Should future research result in the FDA changing positions on marijuana as medicine or the medical community’s consensus for marijuana’s use in standard therapeutic practice change position, then Drug Free Marion County would reconsider this position.


NOTE: This position statement is not intended to include the use or approval of CBD oil for medicinal purposes.

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