by Kimberly James
Connecticut has launched a new educational public campaign to promote responsible adult-use cannabis.
As the state has legalized the possession of small amounts of cannabis for adults age 21 and over, Gov. Ned Lamont and the state’s Department of Consumer Protection are working in unison to encourage health and safety.
Kaitlyn Krasselt, communications director at the Connecticut Department of Consumer Protection, told The Center Square when the law legalizing adult-use cannabis in Connecticut passed, the department knew that public education around health and safety was an important component. The department prioritized time and resources to piece together a public education initiative as the new marketplace is being created.
“Our goal is to help adults who choose to use these products be responsible cannabis consumers by giving them the skills and knowledge to prevent things like accidental ingestion of cannabis by children or pets,” Krasselt said. “It’s important for anybody who purchases or consumes these products to do their part in creating a safe environment within their home to prevent accidental cannabis ingestion.”
According to Krasselt, responsible cannabis use involves a variety of processes, including reading and understanding the labels on the products; storing products in their original containers; keeping all cannabis products locked, stored and out of reach of children and pets; and proper disposal of products.
“Our guides provide tips for safe disposal, including mixing any unused products with other waste material and taping it in a sealed container, like an empty yogurt cup, before throwing it in your regular trash,” Krasselt said. “We also encourage recycling of empty and clean containers if applicable. People should not flush cannabis or packaging down the sink or toilet.”
Krasselt stressed the importance of understanding the signs of accidental ingestion so that it can be recognized if it happens and be familiar with the steps for what to do if an accidental ingestion occurs. She also urged keeping the contact information of health-care providers and the Poison Control Center in an easy-to-find, visible location, such as the refrigerator, for easy access in case a need arises.
The department will continue to add new information and helpful resources to its website, ct.gov/cannabis, once retail sales of adult-use cannabis become more widespread throughout the state.
“We will continue to encourage anyone, whether they choose to use cannabis products or not, to review the materials and share them in their communities,” Krasselt said. “The materials have been shared by cannabis and non-cannabis business owners, medical facilities, community health organizations, and others who want to help promote safe and responsible cannabis practices in their communities.”
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