Online Program

New Frontiers for Health in Marijuana Policy: Lessons Learned from Alcohol and Tobacco to Inform Marijuana Policy at the State and Local Level

Monday, November 2, 2015 : 9:30 a.m. - 9:50 a.m.

Alison Maffey, MSW, Prevention Services Division, Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, Denver, CO
Heath Harmon, MPH, Boulder County Public Health, Boulder, CO
The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) completed a policy analysis of effective strategies to reduce youth access, use or exposure to legal substances such as alcohol and tobacco. Colorado implemented similar policies for retail recreational marijuana at the state level through sweeping legislative changes that did not receive media attention for the public health and youth prevention potential of each policy change. Local governments requested model policy language for county and municipal regulations. CDPHE worked with Boulder County Public Health to identify local policy adaptations and recommendations.

To better inform local government officials and outline potential areas for regulatory improvement, CDPHE outlined the categories of state policy changes that incorporated lessons learned from alcohol and tobacco, including increases to unit price, smoke-free policies, strict licensing and regulations, restricting hours of sale, limiting density, set-backs, advertising restrictions and more. Boulder County Public Health, a local public health agency, partnered with CDPHE to describe how each of these state level laws or regulations could be strengthened at the local level to further prevent youth access to the substance.

CDPHE and Boulder County Public Health will share lessons learned from the adaptation of effective tobacco and alcohol policy strategies to retail marijuana and the implementation of those laws and regulations at the state and local level. CDPHE and local public health agencies will continue to monitor the implementation of effective policy strategies applied to retail marijuana in Colorado.

Learning Areas:

Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs
Public health or related laws, regulations, standards, or guidelines
Public health or related organizational policy, standards, or other guidelines
Public health or related public policy

Learning Objectives:
Identify the policy lessons learned from alcohol and tobacco that were applied to retail recreational marijuana legislation and regulation at the state level in Colorado. Describe local level application of the policy lessons learned from alcohol and tobacco to retail recreational marijuana regulation and variations across municipal and county policies within the state.

Keyword(s): Drug Abuse Prevention and Safety, Public Health Policy

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have managed the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment's Retail Marijuana Education Program since its inception.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.