Joe Robach and Senate want to ban the sale of Salvia Divinorum

In an effort to keep drugs out of the hands of New York State’s youth, Joe Robach and the Senate passed legislation to ban the sale of the legal hallucinogen salvia divinorum.   Salvia divinorum is a substance that can act as a gateway to further drug use and this legislation will help keep children in our state from starting down that destructive path. Joe Robach and the Senate know that too many families in our communities have been affected by the ongoing fight against drugs.  Joe Robach and the Senate believe that parents need to know that New York State is taking steps to help win that important fight. 

Salvia divinorum, also known as Diviner’s Sage, Sister Salvia, Ska Maria Pastora or simply salvia, is a psychoactive plant from the mint family and is currently available on the Internet and in stores without age restrictions.  According to the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA), salvia divinorum is chewed or smoked to induce illusions and hallucinations, the diversity of which is described by users as similar to those induced by ketamine, mescaline, or psilocybin.  It is currently under review by the medical and scientific community to determine if it should be a controlled substance.  While the long-term effects are still being studied, the National Drug Intelligence Center has indicated that they may be similar to those produced by other hallucinogens such as LSD, including depression and schizophrenia. 

Some abusers also indicate that long-term abuse can cause Hallucinogen Persisting Perception Disorder, or “flashbacks.”  Numerous individuals report experiencing negative effects during their first experience with salvia divinorum and indicate that they would not use it a second time. Some others report that the drug caused them to become introverted and sometimes unable to communicate clearly.

Joe Robach and the Senate passed this bill in January.  If passed by the Assembly, S.1833A would go into effect 60 days after becoming law and would subject violators to a civil penalty of up to $500 per violation.  If you need more information, contact Joe Robach’s office.