Colorado is trying to stay ahead of the curve as the state’s landmark legalization of both recreational and medical marijuana heads into its fourth month by making cannabis information available to the public, while also launching a new ad campaign warning the public against driving while high.
Colorado last week unveiled a new website, colorado.gov/marijuana, meant to answer frequently asked questions about legalized cannabis, including its health impacts. The site reportedly incorporates the latest information and resources from Colorado’s state departments of revenue, education, transportation, human services and environment.
“State agencies worked together to develop this website as a reliable resource for parents, consumers, tourists and others who want the facts about marijuana’s health effects and the laws in Colorado,” Dr. Larry Wolk, executive director and chief medical officer at the Colorado department of public health and environment, said a statement.
Wolk says his group has requested $3.7 million this year from Colorado’s general assembly to keep the website as up-to-date as possible with the latest research and educational materials.
As it seeks to educate the public about marijuana, Colorado also began a $500,000 advertising campaign earlier this month warning cannabis consumers not to drive while under the influence. Four Denver-based agencies reportedly handled the campaign, part of which is aimed at Colorado’s Latino population.
“Colorado has recently legalized the use of marijuana,” says an online statement from the Amelie Company, which came up with the creative side of the ad campaign, “meaning a lot of people are now allowed to follow through with their daily routines under the effect of it.”
The company decided to use humor to educate the public via the state’s “Drive High, Get a DUI” campaign, which features three television ads. In one spot, a stoned, would-be home barbecue chef keeps trying to turn on his gas grill, oblivious to the fact that his grill doesn’t have a gas tank.
“Grilling high is now legal,” the ad says towards the end. “Driving to get the propane you forgot isn’t.”
While medical marijuana is legal in 20 states and the District of Columbia, Colorado and Washington on January 1 became the first states to legalize the sale of marijuana for recreational use to adults.
Cannabis remains illegal under federal law, and most broadcasters in both Washington state and Colorado are citing federal broadcasting regulations and staying away from airing ads for marijuana dispensaries, according to Ad Age. But Ad Age reports that advertising online is legal for age-appropriate audiences.
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