colorado department of public health and environment

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Colorado: Teen Marijuana Use Dips After Legalization

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By Derrick Stanley
Hemp News

A new survey released Monday showed that marijuana consumption by Colorado high school students has dipped slightly since the state first permitted recreational use by adults.

The biannual poll by the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment also showed the percentage of teens using marijuana in Colorado was lower than the national average among the age group.

Of the Colorado high school students surveyed in 2015, 21.2 percent had used marijuana during the preceding 30 days, down from 22 percent in 2011, the year before voters approved recreational use for adults over 21.

The rate of pot use by teens nationwide is slightly higher at 21.7 percent, the study showed.

“The survey shows marijuana use has not increased since legalization, with four of five high school students continuing to say they don't use marijuana, even occasionally,” the department said in a statement.

The department works with the University of Colorado and a citizens advisory committee to conduct the voluntary survey every two years. Approximately 17,000 students responded to the poll.

Voters in Colorado and three other states - Washington, Oregon and Alaska - have approved recreational pot sales to adults in recent years, and Colorado was the first state to open retail marijuana shops in 2014. Six other states are considering similar proposals.

U.S.: Teen Marijuana Use Down After Legalization, National Survey Finds

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A national survey released on Tuesday found teen marijuana usage rates decreased from 2013 to 2014 — a period marked by heightened national debate regarding marijuana policy and implementation of the nation’s first marijuana legalization laws.

According to the annual Monitoring the Future Survey, sponsored by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), rates of annual, monthly, and daily marijuana use dropped among 8th-, 10th-, and 12th-graders. More details are available in the researchers’ press release at http://www.monitoringthefuture.org//pressreleases/14drugpr_complete.pdf.

Teens’ perception of ‘great risk’ in marijuana use also decreased among students in all three grades, contradicting the often-heard claim that public dialogue about the benefits of ending marijuana prohibition — including discussion of the relative safety of marijuana compared to alcohol and other substances — will result in more teens using marijuana.

In August, the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment reported that rates of current and lifetime marijuana use among the state’s high school students has dropped since marijuana became legal for adults. More information is available at http://mppne.ws/1BSbM17.

“The survey’s findings and recent polls demonstrate that Americans of all ages are wising up when it comes to marijuana," said Mason Tvert, director of communications for the Marijuana Policy Project (MPP). "Support for ending marijuana prohibition is growing among adults, and marijuana use is dropping among teens.

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