The cannabis industry, as quickly as it's progressing, is still in its infancy. One reason states are hesitant to jump on board the legalization train is because they're waiting to see how states like Colorado and Washington set up their programs, regulate them, and implement them safely and effectively. Colorado has paved the way for the past 15 months, and so far there's been little to criticize — the state has seen a drop in crime, arrests, and unemployment, it's constantly adapting its medical and recreational cannabis regulations to ensure safe, well-functioning programs, and its recreational cannabis program has already generated over $15 million for schools. Now the Centennial State is implementing a "Good to Know" campaign designed to educate both marijuana consumers and retailers on best practices for navigating through the legal market safely and successfully.
Touting the tagline "Be educated. Be responsible.", Good to Know has guidelines for both consumers and cannabis businesses. On the user side, the program has the following reminders in a catchy rhyming format:
- "Public Space is not the place" — don't consume cannabis in public
- "With those under 21, be aware, it's illegal to give or share" — don't purchase or give cannabis to anyone under 21 years of age
- "For those underage, it's just not okay. Their brains are still growing, so keep it away" — a warning so nice, they made it twice! (Seriously, don't give cannabis to people who aren't at least 21 years old.)
- "Store it right: locked up, out of reach and out of sight" — Keep your cannabis in a safe, secure place that's out of reach of minors or pets
- "What you get here can't go out there" — don't transport cannabis products outside of Colorado state lines
- "To buy, have or use some, you must be at least 21" — in case you haven't picked up on this point by now, you must be at least 21 years old to purchase retail cannabis
For retailers, Good to Know offers to send cannabis businesses a free Retailer Kit that includes the following useful resources:
- Takeaway cards containing information for new or inexperienced consumers
- An educational tapestry that can be hung inside the retailer's place of business
- A window cling stressing the retail location caters to adults 21 and up
- A USB drive containing an animated educational video that can play in retail store waiting rooms or be added to the business's website
The video is under six minutes long and follows a question-answer format where common questions about marijuana basics are addressed. Watch it below:
Good To Know Colorado Q&A from CO Dept of Health & Environment on Vimeo.
A tip of the hat to Good to Know Colorado — the state keeps going above and beyond in making sure its cannabis programs are legal, safe, accessible, and comfortable for all types of consumers. Other states take note: programs like Good to Know highlight education and safe access, two crucial components to implementing a successful cannabis program that the rest of the country should emulate as legalization continues to spread.