Imperial, California - With 9 states, including California, Florida and Massachusetts poised to vote next week on marijuana legalization, best-selling author (Ending Addiction for Good) and addiction expert Richard Taite has a compelling message to consider: Greater access to pot will actually save lives.

The indisputable fact is that states that already have marijuana legalization laws on the books have seen a 25% reduction in deaths from opioid overdoses. Why? When given an opportunity to legally access marijuana, many people will choose to forgo potentially life-threatening opioids for pain management.

“The choice to use marijuana could save 10,000 lives a year if legalization became the law of the entire nation,” says Taite, who is also the CEO-founder of Cliffside Malibu, a preeminent evidence-based drug addiction treatment center.

Nationally recognized as a expert in substance abuse and its treatment, Taite is a firebrand in the addiction field and makes for a great interview. He has been widely quoted in the media, including recent appearances on "Real Time With Bill Maher,” ABC “Nightline" and in the feature documentary “Prescription Thugs,” released theatrically earlier this year by Samuel Goldwyn Films.