Just Facts is dedicated and determined to provide factual, documented information to the people of Illinois, educating them on the real risks involved and societal impact of legalization of cannabis.


Motor Vehicle Crashes Up 6 Percent in Four States With Legalized Marijuana

Motor vehicle crashes are up 6 percent in four states with legalized recreational marijuana, compared with four neighboring states where the drug is illegal or restricted, according to Consumer Reports.

Researchers say the findings suggest that as more states legalize recreational marijuana, more will need to be done to find ways to prevent impaired driving accidents.

The findings come from a study conducted by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) and Highway Loss Data Institute (HLDI). Researchers compared insurance claims for vehicle collisions in Colorado, Nevada, Oregon and Washington — where recreational marijuana is legal — with Idaho, Montana, Utah and Wyoming — where it is not.

“The new IIHS-HLDI research on marijuana and crashes indicates that legalizing marijuana for all uses is having an impact on the safety of our roads,” said David Harkey, president of IIHS and HLDI. “States exploring legalizing marijuana should consider the highway safety impact.”


Partnership for Drug-Free Kids. “Motor Vehicle Crashes Up 6 Percent in Four States With Legalized Marijuanahttp://www.drugfree.org. 24 January 2019. Web. 13 March 2019 

Where Marijuana Is Legal, Many Teens Drive While High

In states where marijuana is legal, teens smoking pot and then getting behind the wheel of a car is common, a new study finds.

“There’s a general public zeitgeist that marijuana is a pretty safe drug,” said study co-author Darin Erickson, an associate professor at the University of Minnesota’s School of Public Health.

“In actuality, there hasn’t been a lot of research regarding how marijuana is used, its safety or its harms,” he added in a university news release.
For the study, Erickson and his team surveyed 50 local enforcement agencies in Colorado and Washington state in 2016 and 2017 to find out if underage marijuana use (under 21) and marijuana-impaired driving are problems in their cities. In addition, the researchers asked about the types of enforcement used to tackle those problems, and the resources available to do so.

All of the agencies said that underage use is somewhat or very common, and most said that marijuana-impaired driving is somewhat or very common.


Southern Iowa Mental Health Center. “Where Marijuana Is Legal, Many Teens Drive While Highhttp://www.simhcottumwa.org. 6 February 2019. Web. 12 March 2019 

New study explores why women use marijuana during pregnancy

Marijuana use during pregnancy has doubled in the last decade to become the illicit substance most commonly used by pregnant women. A new study from the University of Pittsburgh explores the attitudes of marijuana-using mothers-to-be.

The study, published this month in the journal Drug and Alcohol Dependence, found that pregnant marijuana users considered their habit to be relatively harmless, but they did have some reservations about potential effects on the developing fetus. Fear of legal action kept them from discussing these concerns with their health care providers.


Medical Xpress. “New study explores why women use marijuana during pregnancyhttp://www.medicalxpress.com. 5 February 2019. Web. 7 March 2019 

Marijuana-related hospital visits up for adolescents

Many people would expect that the legalization of medical marijuana in 2010 followed by the legalization of recreational marijuana in 2014 would increase the rate of adolescent marijuana use in Colorado.

National and state data from 2015, however, revealed that admitted use of marijuana remained about the same for adolescents over the last decade. In spite of that surprising finding, Dr. Sam Wang, assistant professor of pediatrics and emergency medicine for Children’s Hospital Colorado (Children’s Colorado) located at the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus, and his colleagues at Children’s Colorado noticed an anecdotal uptick in visits by adolescents for marijuana-related issues to Children’s Colorado emergency rooms.

“We anecdotally noticed that we were seeing a lot more kids testing positive for marijuana and saying that they used marijuana,” Wang said.


UCHealth Today. “Marijuana-related hospital visits up for adolescentshttp://www.uchealth.org. 7 February 2019. Web. 5 March 2019 

New School Resource Officer Data Shows Increase in Teen Marijuana Use in Illinois

New data shows a troubling increase in teen-agers’ use of marijuana in Illinois, and a significant increase in vaping by teen-agers. Those are two major results from the second annual survey of School Resource Officers, who are police officers with primary responsibilities in schools throughout Illinois.

In the first survey, nearly 60 percent of respondents said that marijuana was the primary drug facing schools. Then, 30 percent of respondents had seen an increase in marijuana-related incidents. Since then, new reports show about an 8 percent increase in the number of school resource officers that say more students are abusing the drug.


Illinois Family Institute. “New School Resource Officer Data Shows Increase in Teen Marijuana Use in Illinois” http://www.illinoisfamily.org. 14 December 2018. Web. 28 February 2019 

Smoking weed while pregnant: Is it safe?

Some pregnant women use marijuana, and researchers are still unsure how the drug can affect a fetus. As a result, most medical experts recommend refraining from smoking weed during pregnancy.

Marijuana is the illicit drug women most commonly take during pregnancy, and use is increasing in certain areas.

As drug laws are relaxing in some parts of the world, it is essential for researchers to determine when marijuana is safe to use.

In this article, learn about the possible risks of smoking weed while pregnant, as well as what the experts recommend.


Medical News Today. “Smoking weed while pregnant: Is it safe?” http://www.medicalnewstoday.com. 2 January 2019. Web. 26 February 2019 

The PopPot Report on Child Deaths Directly Linked to Marijuana Use

We have been tracking news reports of child abuse and neglect linked to marijuana since November 2012. The columns show official causes of death related to a caregiver’s marijuana use. We found news reports of 122 such deaths in 32 states; actual number could be much higher. Violent neglect includes marijuana DUI (12), guns (5) and pit bulls. The last column includes infants (10) whose mothers used during pregnancy and who died shortly after birth.


Parents Opposed to Pot. “The PopPot Report on Child Deaths Directly Linked to Marijuana Use” http://www.stoppot.org. 2 October 2018. Web. 21 February 2019 

Research Indicates Expanded Probability Of Harm From Cannabis All Over Europe

Research indicates expanded probability of harm from cannabis all over Europe. Cannabis resin and herbal cannabis have importantly extended in potency and in price, as per an investigation. According to a study portrays that herbal cannabis congregation of delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) rose by a corresponding amount each year, from 5% in 2006 to 10% in 2016.

For cannabis resin (or hash), THC concentrations were comparatively steady from 2006 to 2011 (from 8% to 10%) but then rose swiftly from 2011 to 2016 (from 10% to 17%). The cost of cannabis resin also rose, but at a lower rate as compared to herbal cannabis.

Lead author Dr. Tom Freeman from the Addiction and Mental Health Group within the Department of Psychology at the University of Bath, said that these discoveries portray that cannabis resin has altered swiftly across Europe deriving in a more potent and better value product.

Disparate herbal cannabis, cannabis resin generally entails cannabidiol (CBD) in addition to THC. CBD has lately allured substantial heed due to its probable to nurse varied medical conditions involving childhood epilepsy syndromes, psychosis and anxiety. When existing in Cannabis CBD may countervail some of the detrimental impacts of THC such as paranoia and memory impairment.


Tribune Hub. “Research Indicates Expanded Probability Of Harm From Cannabis All Over Europe” http://www.tribunehub.com. 2 January 2019. Web. 19 February 2019 

Father Raymond J. de Souza: Cannabis causes harm. But no one cares

Later this month, recreational use of marijuana will become legal in Canada. The toll of human misery will accordingly increase, but not to worry, some very wealthy firms will make a lot of money and the government will get its share of the booty, just as it does with tobacco, gambling and alcohol.

It has never been clear exactly what problem the legalization of marijuana is the solution to.

Over a year ago I asked questions about what social good legalized pot is supposed to achieve. The government did not have answers then and, on the threshold of legalization, is not greatly bothered to find any.

I have always suspected that the guilty conscience of the affluent is a major factor. Their adult children have the luxury of whiling away a few years snowboarding and smoking pot, but are not in legal jeopardy because rich kids do not get pot convictions. The prime minister himself alluded to that when he acknowledged that his late brother Michel was charged with possession but their father, Pierre Elliott Trudeau, made it go away.

No one predicts an increase in industriousness or health or greater social harmony from legal pot. To the contrary, employers are putting in place restrictions on pot use. Mental-health experts, already lamenting the lack of resources for the treatment, know that marijuana smoking will only make those problems worse at least for the young, but not only them.


National Post. “Father Raymond J. de Souza: Cannabis causes harm. But no one careshttp://www.nationalpost.com. 9 October 2018. Web. 14 February 2019 

How marijuana can harm teenage brains, and what may be done to prevent the damage

In a compelling new study, researchers at Johns Hopkins Medicine have established a fascinating hypothesis attempting to explain how marijuana use in some teenagers can result in cognitive impairment in adulthood. The research also suggests anti-inflammatory therapies may be able to prevent the marijuana-induced brain damage.

“Now that marijuana is moving toward widespread legalization and recreational use, it’s important to learn more about why it’s not harmless to everyone,” says co-senior author of the new research, Atsushi Kamiya. “There’s still a lot that we don’t know about how pot specifically affects the brain.”

Several studies have confidently linked adolescent marijuana use to certain cognitive impairments in later life. However, the connection has not been consistent across all research leading many scientists to suspect there must be an underlying genetic component that amplifies the adverse effects of the drug. This would explain why some people can smoke marijuana as a teenager with no adverse effects in later life while others may develop memory impairments or suffer from metal health issues.


New Atlas. “How marijuana can harm teenage brains, and what may be done to prevent the damage” http://www.newatlas.com. 19 December 2018. Web. 12 February 2019