There’s no question that the best way to deal with most situations is to take them head on. There has been a lot of talk about how recreational marijuana use should be regulated or handled, especially since legalization has taken place in so many states, with more appearing ready to follow. Instead of trying to ignore the rise in legal cannabis use, we believe it’s important to embrace a proper code of conduct up front. Students know what’s expected of them, security knows how to handle incidents of students who break these rules, and there’s at least a framework set up so everyone knows what is expected of every party that is involved. click here for more details.
The old rules just don’t make sense anymore. If marijuana is legal, prohibiting it completely is, at best, a random and arbitrary rule from a past time. In addition to this, studies have shown clearly that frequent marijuana use has gone up across college campuses for years as use of other, actually dangerous drugs has gone down. This isn’t a problem to tackle, but an opportunity to encourage responsible use in college and life by creating a framework that allows students who want to exercise their legal right to do so without intruding on those students who don’t want to be around it.
We’d like to suggest starting the conversation with the following:
Healthy Regulation Is Good
There’s no protection for anyone involved when something is pushed behind closed doors. A common debate on dry campuses revolves around the concern of the injuries or serious issues that can take place when there’s no legal way to use alcohol on campus: and thus students are hesitant to contact help when something goes wrong. Sweeping potential problems behind closed doors often causes a situation to get worse, while healthy and responsible rules and regulations can be put into place if things are kept out in the open.
Encouraging Responsibility As Part Of Orientation
Why not tackle this issue from the beginning? Instead of running away from it or creating a gray zone where no one is quite sure what the rules are, treating marijuana like alcohol or cigarettes and placing definitive rules on its usage from the beginning sets a standard for responsible use throughout a college career.
Real Education Up Front
Education is a crucial part of being able to make responsible decisions, but you can’t make a smart decision if you don’t have all the information. Many new users don’t know the difference between smoking a joint or eating an edible, and that can cause problems from eating too many edibles or doing too much too fast and having a reaction as a result. Practical up front education can make a huge difference and cut off many of these issues right off at the pass.
If we set expectations of responsibility from the beginning, we’re going to be much happier with the results down the line.
Very Clear Rules & Regulations
There are already rules around other substances. You can’t run around campus drinking whiskey out of a bottle, you can’t smoke a cigar in class, you can’t smoke in your room. These are accepted and well known rules, so why not add similar rules that make it clear that marijuana is regulated the exact same way? This makes perfect sense to set the right stage for smokers and non-smokers on campus.If we’re open about regulating marijuana usage on campus we can create uniform rules or regulations about where, how, when, and any other details that are important to maintaining that balance of rights between students who want to exercise their right to use legal cannabis and those students who have every right not to be around it at all.
By having a uniform set of rules, we all have the ability to make responsible decisions about use, and can accept the consequences of knowingly breaking those clearly laid out rules. Having a clear set of rules also makes it easier to have uniform reporting standards for security – always an important issue to make sure everyone is being treated the same.
Have Specific Smoking / No Smoking Zones
Should there be limited smoking zones for marijuana on campus? Whether this is making sure there’s one area that is acceptable to use legal cannabis in every dorm, or simply marking out a few very specific spots across campus where this activity is accepted, setting a framework now allows us to encourage responsible use, correct students who are not adhering to the rules, and make adjustments once the framework is laid out.
Encouraging Responsible Practices
Simply taking the action to create a responsible outline for how to deal with legal cannabis on campus not only allows a framework for how to deal with this issue, but leads by example to show the importance of smart choices and the right amount of regulation in all parts of college life.