An emergency room doctor says he has seen an increase of children and young adults coming into his hospital doors after being exposed to marijuana since the start of the new year.
January 1 was the first day licensed marijuana dispensaries could legally sell products in the state of California.
The state of Colorado saw a spike in average marijuana-related exposures in children, teenagers and young adults after recreational marijuana became legal there several years back.
Local news from across Southern California
According to a report by the Rocky Mountain High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area, the number of exposures for children ages 0-5 years old climbed from 4 to 37 pre-versus post-legislation.
The San Fernando Valley Partnership, a substance abuse prevention organization, is sounding the alarm, saying more needs to be done locally to ensure exposure to children and teenagers is limited. The main concern are edibles.
Businesses like MedMen say they do not want children to be exposed to marijuana products. Daniel Yi, MadMen Corporate Communications Director, says it not only abide by state laws but also put the products they sell in child resistant “exit bags”until July 1st, when packaging guidelines in the state of California are in full effect.
Under the guidelines from the California Department of Public Health:
NBC4 I-Team Investigative Reporter Lolita Lopez's full report is below.