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What's New At Drug War Facts - Vol. 4, No. 4, April 2014

Notable New Facts

(Impact of Medical Marijuana Legalization (MML) on Crime Rates in States That Have Legalized Medical Cannabis) "The central finding gleaned from the present study was that MML is not predictive of higher crime rates and may be related to reductions in rates of homicide and assault. Interestingly, robbery and burglary rates were unaffected by medicinal marijuana legislation, which runs counter to the claim that dispensaries and grow houses lead to an increase in victimization due to the opportunity structures linked to the amount of drugs and cash that are present. Although, this is in line with prior research suggesting that medical marijuana dispensaries may actually reduce crime in the immediate vicinity [8]."
Source: Robert G. Morris, Michael TenEyck, JC Barnes, and Tomislav V. Kovandzic, "The Effect of Medical Marijuana Laws On Crime: Evidence From State Panel Data, 1990-2006," PLoS ONE 9(3): e92816. March 2014. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0092816
- See more at: http://www.drugwarfacts.org/cms/node/3593#sthash.SwIvB5TR.dpuf

(High-Potency Cannabis and Potential For Developing Dependence) "This study among 98 experienced cannabis smokers is the first naturalistic study to examine whether users of cannabis with high THC concentration titrate the psychoactive effects by using lower doses and/or by reduced inhalation, and whether cannabis smoking behaviour (topography) predicts cannabis dependence severity independently of total THC exposure.
"In contrast to our hypothesis, there was a positive association between cannabis THC concentration and cannabis dose, indicating that users of stronger cannabis generally used larger amounts of cannabis to prepare their regular joint. However, in line with our hypothesis, the negative association between THC concentration of joints and total inhaled smoke volume indicates that users of stronger joints inhaled smaller smoke volumes, thus resulting in partial titration of the total THC exposure. Overall, as exemplified by the comparison of the average user with the user with the maximum THC concentration, users of high-potency cannabis will generally be exposed to higher total doses of THC (at least in this sample). This is in line with Cappell et al.’s observations through a one-way mirror experiment in 1973 where users only partly adapted their intake [14]. Indeed, increased THC concentrations of cannabis have recently been linked to increased internal THC exposure assessed in blood [28]."
Source: Peggy van der Pol, Nienke Liebregts, Tibor Brunt, Jan van Amsterdam, Ron de Graaf, Dirk J. Korf, Wim van den Brink & Margriet van Laar, "Cross-sectional and prospective relation of cannabis potency, dosing and smoking behaviour with cannabis dependence: an ecological study," Addiction, March 16, 2014, doi:10.1111/add.12508.
- See more at: http://www.drugwarfacts.org/cms/node/3566#sthash.3mRrga6N.dpuf

(Prevalence of Employee Drug Testing) "Drug and alcohol testing continues to be an important part of screening both before and after hire. Fifty-eight percent of respondents indicated their organization conducted drug and/or alcohol screening, and this number jumped to 62% for respondents with organizations of more than 4,000 employees.
"The vast majority of organizations (95%) that indicated they conducted drug testing, perform urine tests. Breath alcohol tests (23%), hair (9%), saliva (8%), and blood testing (6%) were also conducted, but much less frequently.
"Fifty percent of the organizations that conducted drug and alcohol screening used an electronic Chain-of-Custody (eCOC) form to track results with 10% indicating they would adopt the form if it became acceptable by federal regulation."
Source: "Employment Screening Benchmark Report, 2014 Edition," HireRight, Inc., March 2014, pp. 21-22.
- See more at: http://www.drugwarfacts.org/cms/node/3579#sthash.WUK9YnXm.dpuf

Notable New Sources

Robert G. Morris, Michael TenEyck, JC Barnes, and Tomislav V. Kovandzic, "The Effect of Medical Marijuana Laws On Crime: Evidence From State Panel Data, 1990-2006," PLoS ONE 9(3): e92816. March 2014. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0092816

Sherrica Tai and William E. Fantegrossi, "Synthetic Cannabinoids: Pharmacology, Behavioral Effects, and Abuse Potential," Current Addiction Reports, March 15, 2014, DOI 10.1007/s40429-014-0014-y.

Peggy van der Pol, Nienke Liebregts, Tibor Brunt, Jan van Amsterdam, Ron de Graaf, Dirk J. Korf, Wim van den Brink & Margriet van Laar, "Cross-sectional and prospective relation of cannabis potency, dosing and smoking behaviour with cannabis dependence: an ecological study," Addiction, March 16, 2014, doi:10.1111/add.12508.

European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction, "Estimating public expenditure on drug-law offenders in prison in Europe," EMCDDA Papers, Publications Office of the European Union, Luxembourg, February 2014, p. 14.

Rebecca E. Balter, Ziva D. Cooper, and Margaret Haney, "Novel Pharmacologic Approaches to Treating Cannabis Use Disorder," Current Addiction Reports, March 1, 2014, DOI 10.1007/s40429-014-0011-1.

Rossman, Shelli B., et al., "Final Report, Volume 4: The Multi-Site Adult Drug Court Evaluation: The Impact of Drug Courts" (Washington, DC: Urban Institute, June 2011), p. 66.

"Employment Screening Benchmark Report, 2014 Edition," HireRight, Inc., March 2014.

Reitox Focal Point at Public Health England, United Kingdom Drug Situation 2013 Edition. UK Focal Point on Drugs Annual Report to the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction (EMCDDA), Oct. 31, 2013.

Organization of American States, "The Drug Problem in the Americas: Studies: Chapter 4: The Economics of Drug Trafficking," 2013.

"National Drug Control Budget: FY 2015 Funding Highlights" (Washington, DC: Executive Office of the President, Office of National Drug Control Policy), March 2014.

Media

It's the Drug Policy Facts podcast! Listen, download, and subscribe from
http://www.podcastgarden.com/podcast/drugwarfacts.
Drug Policy Facts #21 4/1/2014 This week: Congressional drug warriors have a love-fest on Capitol Hill with acting drug czar Michael Botticelli; research indicates that medical marijuana legalization may have a positive impact on lowering crime rates; the UN Human Rights Committee criticizes the US's human rights performance; and we look at a couple of good new books on drug policy.
http://www.podcastgarden.com/episode/drug-policy-facts-21_14676
Drug Policy Facts #20 3/25/2014 This week: Part 2 of our coverage of the UN's Commission on Narcotic Drugs annual meeting in Vienna, including the voices of Eliot Albers from INPUD, author Doug Fine, and actor/comedian Russell Brand.
http://www.podcastgarden.com/episode/drug-policy-facts-20_14177
Drug Policy Facts #19 3/18/2014 This week: Part 1 of our coverage of the 57th Session of the United Nations Commission on Narcotic Drugs meeting in Vienna, Austria.
http://www.podcastgarden.com/episode/drug-policy-facts-19_13675
Drug Policy Facts #18 3/12/2014 This week: The UN's Commission on Narcotic Drugs holds its annual high-level meeting in Vienna, and we have audio from one of the opening sessions; and there's a new report on what Americans spend on illegal drugs.
http://www.podcastgarden.com/episode/drug-policy-facts-18_13325
Drug Policy Facts #17 3/4/2014 The UN's International Narcotics Control Board releases its annual assessment of the international drug war; and the US State Department releases its annual assessment of the international drug war.
http://www.podcastgarden.com/episode/drug-policy-facts-17_12785

Drug Truth Network:
Century of Lies: UN Commission on Narcotic Drugs 2014 meeting part 1 http://www.drugtruth.net/cms/node/4772
Century of Lies: UN Commission on Narcotic Drugs 2014 meeting part 2 http://www.drugtruth.net/cms/node/4791
420 News:
Report on UN OHCHR presentation at CND2014 http://www.drugtruth.net/cms/node/4779
Report on CND2014 part 2 http://www.drugtruth.net/cms/node/4774
Report on CND2014 part 1 http://www.drugtruth.net/cms/node/4773
Russian Drug Policy http://www.drugtruth.net/cms/node/4761
Nixon's drug war http://www.drugtruth.net/cms/node/4760
Doug Fine speaking to the VNGOC in Vienna http://www.drugtruth.net/cms/node/4784

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