A group of prominent marijuana activists in Washington state on Thursday signed a letter expressing concern about proposed THC blood limits that would codify driving under the influence (DUI) levels in the state.
“We applaud your willingness to stand up for the repeal of marijuana prohibition,” reads the letter, addressed to the sponsors of marijuana legalization initiative New Approach Washington. “However, we are very concerned about New Approach Washington’s proposal regarding Driving Under the Influence of Cannabis or DUIC.”
The initiative, I-502, would establish a THC blood limit of five nanograms per milliliter (5 ng/ml) in drivers 21 and over. That level is reduced to 0.00 for drivers under age 21.
“Initiative 502 creates a new law that makes it illegal to drive with 5 ng/ml of active THC in your bloodstream, even if you are not impaired,” the group Patients Against New Approach Washington says on its Facebook page. “That level is NOT supported by science and would subject patients to highly-invasive blood testing, unnecessary confinement and a criminal conviction that will haunt them for life.
“What’s worse is the ZERO tolerance clause for those under age 21,” Patients Against NAW says. “Drivers in this age bracket will be guilty of DUI if even the smallest amount of cannabis is found in their system. Anything over 0.00 in fact. In other words, a designated driver subjected to second-hand cannabis smoke would be held criminally liable for the activities of others.”