To The Editor:
I am writing regarding my concern about the increased use of K2 in our City. K2 is touted in the communities as an alternative to Marijuana because it allegedly provides a “high” similar to marijuana while not being detectible by common drug tests used today.
Unlike marijuana, which is natural and has been proven safe and non addictive, K2 is a synthetic chemical that is sprayed on greens that allegedly provides a high like marijuana. I have been working in the mental health/substance abuse field for 30+ years and I have never been this concerned about a substance. K2, unlike marijuana, frequently induces auditory hallucinations even in those who have NEVER experienced auditory hallucinations prior to using K2. Even more disturbing is that the hallucinations frequently continue after K2 is discontinued and those who have used K2 may be required to take psychotropic drugs to control the auditory hallucinations for the rest of their lives. I am extremely concerned about the increased use of K2 and I would ask for the City, private employers, and parole and probation officers to seriously consider discontinuing drug testing for marijuana.
So many individuals in jobs where random drug tests are routine, and those on parole and probation turn to K2 to avoid a positive marijuana drug test, but in doing so, subject themselves to the possibility of experiencing psychotic symptoms for the rest of their life.
Marijuana has been decriminalized in NYC. We really need to have it legalized. Not doing so will result in more and more NY’ers turning to K2 to avoid detection in drug tests, and ending up destroying their life forever with auditory hallucinations caused by K2, as well as destroying the lives of others by their actions while under K2’s influence.