Target: Kathleen Conti, Colorado Legislator
Goal: Increase preventative measures in order to prevent children from accidentally consuming medical marijuana
In Colorado, the number of children sent to the ER due to accidental consumption of marijuana has risen since marijuana laws became more lax in 2009. Urge Colorado legislators to institute new preventive measures against accidental marijuana ingestion by children.
Medical marijuana dispensaries can offer many tempting looking treats that look and taste great. Some common medical marijuana treats include gummy candies, cookies, brownies, and beverages. A study in Colorado showed that in the two years following the U.S. Justice Department’s decision that medical marijuana users and suppliers were not to be arrested if they were abiding by state laws, accidental ingestion of marijuana by children increased from 0 out of 790 to 14 out of 588. Seven of the 14 were caused by the accidental ingestion of medical marijuana.
Symptoms of marijuana ingestion in children include extreme sleepiness, difficulty walking, and respiratory distress. One of the children who ingested the marijuana was only 8 months old, but all of the kids recovered after a few days.
Dr. George Sam Wang, an emergency physician at a children’s hospital in Colorado, suggests that child-proof packaging could be used to lessen the number of kids who accidentally consume medical marijuana. Another possible solution could be warning labels on the packaging.
Though 18 states and Washington D.C. allow medical marijuana, it still remains illegal under federal law. Urge Colorado Legislator Kathleen Conti to propose new preventive measures against medical marijuana poisonings, so that others may follow her lead.
Dear Kathleen Conti,
Colorado has seen an increase in accidental marijuana poisoning in children since the laws regarding medical marijuana became more lax in 2009. In order to remedy this, please propose an increase in preventive measures to the committee of Public Health Care & Human Services.
Some possible preventive measures include warning labels on the wrapping, though a child may not be able to read those, and child-proof packaging. In the 1940s, accidental poisonings by aspirin dropped by 95% when preventive packaging came into use. Dr. Wang of the children’s hospital in Colorado is already a support of the child-proof packaging. Please add your voice to his, so that it may reach all of the 18 states that allow medical marijuana.
Thank you for your time.
[Your Name Here]
Photocredit: David Snyder via Flickr