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Marijuana legalization has NOT led to more drug or alcohol abuse among young people

Cannabis activists proclaim the benefits of legal marijuana, while opponents suggest it will lead to increased drug abuse and crime. Turns out both groups may be wrong.

Liberalized marijuana laws appear to have little positive or negative impact, according to a new working paper by researchers from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, Harvard University and Western Carolina University. In fact, more liberal marijuana laws have had “minimal impact” on marijuana use, other substance use, alcohol consumption or crime rates, the study found.

The paper, which was distributed by the National Bureau of Economic Research, based its findings on data from the annual surveys of high-school seniors conducted by Monitoring the Future, an ongoing study of American youth that began in 1975.

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