As the state Legislature is considering the passage of a bill to legalize marijuana for adult use in New York, the New York State PTA on Thursday is pushing back.
The organization is releasing an email to members to call attention to the marijuana measure, raising concerns over the effect cannabis products could have on younger people if they gain access.
The proposal would only allow those age 21 and older to buy cannabis products, but the PTA is concerned about amendments that could lead to reduced penalties for selling to younger people.
"With the serious crisis of youth vaping and tobacco use, and in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic which affects the lungs, while still battling the opioid crisis, this harmful legislation is counterintuitive. Especially now," the email states.
"Tell Albany they need to heed the recommendations from leading medical and public health organizations, education groups, and the law enforcement community and OPPOSE the legalization of recreational marijuana."
State lawmakers are once again this month considering a bill that would legalize cannabis sales in New York and create a social equity fund with a portion of the revenue.
The measure, which could be included in the final budget deal by the end of the month, has the backing of Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Democratic legislative leaders, but differences remain over the details of the legislation.