Following the passage of Prop. 64 that legalized marijuana last November, there is now a bi-partisan effort in the California State Legislature to pass new laws to protect children from the drug’s potentially harmful effects.
Assembly Bill 350 by Assemblyman Rudy Salas (D-Bakersfield) would prohibit the sale of marijuana that resembles candy or other characteristics that are attractive to children. Senate Bill 663 by Senator Jim Nielsen (R-Gerber) has a bill moving through the Legislature that would prohibit marijuana packaging from resembling other commonly sold products or featuring cartoon characters. And Senate Bill 794 by Senator Harry Stern (D-Los Angeles) would require all marijuana products to be marked by a universal symbol signifying its presence.
While no concrete statistics on the impacts of children have been released, reports of children unknowingly ingesting marijuana at parties and other events have been reported in California, such as this report where 13 children fell ill at a quinceañera in San Francisco.
Stay tuned with the California Catholic Conference as we track the impacts of the legalization of marijuana in the state and the ways to minimize them.