“The intent here is to save lives and get these poisons off the streets.”
~San Diego Councilwoman Marti Emerald
The City of San Diego showed that it was serious about cracking down on synthetic drugs by unanimously approving an emergency law prohibiting the manufacture, sale, distribution, or possession of novel “synthetic” or “psychoactive” drugs – which includes Spice, the so-called “synthetic marijuana”.
In 2011, California banned the specific chemicals used to make Spice, but as is often the case with synthetic drugs, manufacturers simply altered the formula slightly to get around the law. San Diego has closed this loophole by concentrating on the reaction within the brain, rather than the formulation.
Kathryn Turner, with the City Attorney’s office, says the new law will focus on “what it is doing to the human body and protecting the people in the City of San Diego from being that human guinea pig.”
According to the San Diego Association of Governments, the abuse of Spice has skyrocketed in the area within the last few months –
- November 2015-March 2016, emergency personnel responded to 650 Spice-related calls
- In February alone, there were 201 calls
- For comparison, there were only 24 calls in October 2015
- Bad reactions to Spice can include hallucinations and breathing difficulties
- Nearly half of all juvenile arrestees in San Diego County report using Spice
- Since 2012, the number of adult arrestees reporting Spice use has increased by 50%
- Among those arrestees who had tried Spice, 83% of juveniles and 62% of adults tried it as an alternative to marijuana
- 43% of juveniles and 38% of adults had used Spice instead of marijuana, to avoid a positive drug test
If you or someone you care about is struggling with dangerous synthetic drugs, Lasting Recovery can help with the best evidence-based, wellness-focused outpatient treatment program in San Diego.
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