June 22, 2017
Contact: Joy Sweeney, Chairperson
KMKS Applauds Attorney General Josh Hawley Suit Against Opioid Manufacturers
The statewide coalition, Keeping Missouri Kids Safe (KMKS), applauds Missouri Attorney General Josh Hawley's statement announcing Missouri's initiative to hold accountable pharmaceutical companies that fraudulently misrepresented the risks of opioids. The continued focus on the dangers of addiction is at the heart of the KMKS mission to educate the public about the dangers of marijuana to youth and its relationship with other drug addictions.
Recent data found adolescents who regularly use marijuana are 26 times more likely to use other illicit drugs by age 21 than those who don’t. The study by UK's Bristol's Population Health Science Institute, published online in the Journal of Epidemiology & Community Health, also found cannabis use was associated with harmful drinking and smoking.
"The more Missouri recognizes addiction, the less it can support expansion of any marijuana legalization, even the current push for 'medical,' which we know is no more than de facto recreational legalization, said Dr. Joy Sweeney, KMKS Chair and Executive Director of Council for Drug Free Youth. Current data shows higher teen use of marijuana in states that have legalized marijuana for medical use, including Colorado. Colorado stands out as the only state in the nation that ranks at the top for consumption of opioid painkillers, marijuana, alcohol, and cocaine, according to a recent report by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.