For adults over the age of 21 in the state of Washington, marijuana is now legal for recreational use. But it is still absolutely forbidden for anyone under the age of 21 to have or use the drug, and Washington State Governor Jay Inslee is doing his part to ensure that kids are protected as retail establishments begin to open their doors.
Some of the measures put into place to protect kids and teens include:
- The requirement of getting approval for packaging prior to distribution of edible marijuana items
- A ban on any packaging on any marijuana product that seems to speak to children (e.g., toy images, cartoons)
- New, more stringent regulations for marijuana edibles due to recent deaths
In a news release, Governor Inslee said, “This is an all-hands-on-deck effort to make sure we keep kids safe. We want every retailer to know that kids are off limits and every parent to know how to talk to kids about why marijuana isn’t safe. The initiative legalized marijuana only for adults 21 and over and it is incumbent on everyone—retailers, parents, health professionals, and public officials—to do everything possible to keep pot away from kids. If we fail in that, Washington’s regulated, retail market for marijuana may fail, too.”
Teen Marijuana Abuse
Many parents are concerned that the legalization of marijuana for recreational purposes is going to increase the amount of marijuana on the street. This would increase the availability of the drug to teens and up the number of teens who abuse the drug. It’s a viable concern and certainly many medical, government, and legislative organizations are paying attention. Only time will tell, and parents are encouraged to be on heightened alert, not just in the states where marijuana is legal recreationally but in bordering states as well.
Helping Your Son Avoid the Pitfalls of Substance Abuse
Because the human brain continues to develop until the mid-20s, it is important that teenagers and young adults avoid drug use of any kind. Substance abuse is not a “normal” part of growing up, nor is it harmless. If your son is smoking marijuana in any amount, don’t wait to enroll him in the treatment that will help him gain a clearer understanding of what drugs and alcohol of any kind can do to his personality, cognitive function, health, and future. Contact us at Muir Wood today.