NEW WINDSOR – The group Smart Approaches to Marijuana New York (SMART) has launched a billboard campaign calling on residents to contact their state lawmakers urging them to reject the proposal to legalize recreational marijuana.
Billboards have been installed in New Windsor, Brewster and Yonkers.
“Big Marijuana, Big Tobacco and the alcohol industry routinely gloss over the health and societal costs of their predatory industry,” said SAM New York President Dr. Kevin Sabet, a former Obama Administration drug policy advisor.
“People need to know the facts. Medical science, experiences in other states and basic common sense all point to an industry that is targeting, exploiting and victimizing young people, the low income and minorities.”
Sabet said. said in states where marijuana has been legalized, “we’re seeing high rates of youth use, no meaningful impact on the opioid crisis, an exploding black market and continued disproportionate arrests of minorities,.”
He said New Yorkers “don’t want pot shops in their communities,” saying “more counties are opting out preemptively or expressing grave concern about the policy.”
Sabet said legislators and the governor “need to stop believing the lies of the same interests that brought us cigarettes and the opioid crisis and instead focus on real reforms like marijuana decriminalization.”