In November 2012, Colorado voters went to the polls to decide on – among other things – an amendment to allow for the use of cannabis by adults age 21 and older. Amendment 64 passed, and in 2013, dispensaries began the sale of cannabis; and while sales began to increase, so did the State’s response to higher access to use. At first, a fractured and territorial response from State agencies left few resources, allocations, or guidance for professionals working in substance abuse prevention and treatment. Higher education was one of several industries with discordant guidance between federal and state policies. In this session, the presenter will review of history of cannabis laws, implications before and after legalization in Colorado, implications for higher education practice, and why federal compliance among legalization – while complicated – might be least of our concerns.
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