Those who are against marijuana legalized will often use rehabilitation rates as an argument to suggest that legalizing marijuana will result in a plethora of drug addicts. That argument can easily be refuted, though, by some of the more recent evidence around drug treatment; it turns out that drug treatment for meridian addictions are actually court ordered rather than people trying to tie their habits on their own.

A new study from the United State’s Department of Health & Human Services suggests that over 50% of those who go through treatment and self-help programs to get rid of their daily, sometimes less, marijuana habits are only doing so because it is the preferable option when compared to going to jail. Tom Angell, from the Marijuana Majority, highlights in an analysis, that this would mean “fewer than one out of five people in treatment for marijuana checked themselves in voluntarily or were referred by another individual.”

When the numbers are more closely examined, it becomes evident that drug programs are merely alternatives to jail. The report proves that over 44% of the people that are currently in a self-help program are only there because of a recommendation from their parole officer. The courts are also responsible for another 16% of referrals while more than 2% come from prison systems themselves.

“Primary marijuana admissions were most likely to be referred by a criminal justice source,” the report says.

It has become clear that many of those taken in by police for minor marijuana-related offenses are being forcibly put into treatment programs that would benefit those who have severe addictions much more. At the moment, the United States is going through one of the worst painkiller addiction epidemics that the nation has ever witnessed.

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