NC lawmakers consider banning Kratom

GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) - North Carolina lawmakers are considering making Kratom, the drug that is commonly used to deal with pain or opioid detox, illegal.

If Senate Bill 830 is passed, North Carolina would join Tennessee, Indiana, Wisconsin, and Vermont in making the drug illegal.

"A lot of teenagers use it that can't get alcohol or afraid of getting arrested for possession of weed and it's very addicting too," explained Abdula Elsumer, who added that he won't sell Kratom in his convenience store in Greenville. "We already have a problem with all the prescription pills like Xanax and all that. It's just another pill for kids to get high."

The herbal drug comes in different forms and is not FDA approved. There is also no age limit to purchase it.

Kratom is also sold online for as little as $6.99. Advocates for the drug say it offers relief of chronic pain, and could help former addicts stop using opioids.

Elsumer says he's not taking the chance of selling it, and hope lawmakers ban the substance.

"I don't want to be the cause of anything happening to them," explained Elsumer.

Lawmakers could bring the issue up again as early as next week.

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