As New York considers legalizing marijuana, attention is also turning to how the drug plays a role in the city’s child welfare system—one that has the power to remove children from their parents and that investigates, almost exclusively, low-income families of color. Parents and advocates have reported that recreational marijuana use can lead to investigations of child maltreatment by the city’s Administration for Children’s Services. Many times these investigations stem from testing pregnant women and their newborns at the city’s public hospitals, according to testimony at a City Council hearing on Wednesday. Queens Councilwoman Adrienne Adams called the practice “the systemic criminalization of women of color,” which comes with the threat of separating children and parents. “We are absolutely tearing families apart, needlessly,” Adams said.
A Colorado mother is being forced to put her son, who is suffering from leukemia, back into toxic chemotherapy and radiation treatment that almost killed him, even though his cancer is in remission. When her son almost died from the first round of chemotherapy, she took him to Colorado so she could give him medical marijuana which is natural and has none of the side effects of chemotherapy. In spite of the fact that there is solid scientific research on cannabis healing cancer, it remains not only a drug not approved by the FDA, but a criminal illegal drug federally. Colorado recently passed laws allowing it to be distributed in that state. But under threat of the CPS taking her child away, she was forced to obey a medical doctor to allow chemotherapy to resume again.