WA HCA - Webinar - Impacts of Marijuana Legalization in Washington
(September 29, 2020) - Initial Update

Substance abuse prevention staff at the Washington State Health Care Authority (WA HCA) presented selected research on perceived trends in marijuana use, access, and normalization revealing a narrow focus on anticipated harms.

  • Washington State Health Care Authority (WA HCA) Prevention Policy and Project Manager Christine Steele was joined by WA HCA Prevention Research and Evaluation Manager Tyler Watson to present interpretations of “many studies” to an unclear audience. No direct visibility was provided as to the quantity or identity of observers, nor the intended audience(s) for the high-level overview provided of very particular interpretations of data drawn largely from the post-legalization period in Washington, but also often dated several years.
  • There were some interesting observations, revealing “using” of language, and some surprising failures of fact  - such as a belief that consumers were paying a 25% excise tax due to “industry lobbying” (the excise tax was raised to 37% in 2015).
  • The slidedeck was well-annotated with references to data sources and studies. Cannabis Observer will request meeting materials associated with the event to tell more of the story.

Information Set