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The center aims to conduct, support, and share academic and practical research. With special attention to issues surrounding the reform of laws prohibiting or regulating the use and distribution of traditionally illicit drugs. Research efforts include grant programs, hosting visiting scholars and supporting three faculty members at the Moritz College of Law, College of Social Work, and John Glenn College of Public Affairs.
“As the nation grapples with the opioid epidemic and the fast pace of change in state and local marijuana laws, the need for independent research and analysis of drug laws and their enforcement is paramount to provide advocates, policymakers and community leaders with information and evidence needed for effective policies. One fundamental goal for our center is to provide sophisticated and objective analysis that contextualizes today’s problems and challenges with the history of drug enforcement and drug policy reform in the United States. Our center aspires to provide a venue for thoughtful discussion and critical engagement with these issues.”
Professor Douglas A. Berman, Executive Director, Drug Enforcement and Policy Center
Medical marijuana became legal in Ohio on September 8, 2016 when House Bill 523 (HB 523) became effective. This bill created the framework for the Ohio Medical Marijuana Control Program (OMMCP), and the architects of HB 523 promised the program would be “fully operational” within two years. But as of July 15th, 2020, the OMMCP was still not fully operational, creating concerns around persistent delays and the overall functionality of the program.
After a year and a half of partially operating, the OMMCP continues its slow rollout. With possible future marijuana reforms on the horizon, the perceived effectiveness and success of the current system among Ohioans may shape the long-term future of the program. To our knowledge, the Harm Reduction Ohio (HRO) report released in September 2019 was the first concerted effort to survey patients and potential patients to evaluate their experiences and satisfaction with the OMMCP to date. This report looks at how people potentially impacted by the OMMCP perceive its performance and whether there have been changes in their satisfaction levels as compared to last year’s survey data. Our updated survey allows for a new examination into the efficacy of the structure of Ohio’s Medical Marijuana Control Program and how this state’s initial experience with marijuana reform can inform the larger national conversations currently underway.
Learn more about the study at u.osu.edu/ommcpsurvey.