Friday, April 18, 2014

State Officials Caution the Public About Responsible Marijuana Use During 4/20 Celebrations

April 20 is the unofficial holiday of marijuana enthusiasts. If Coloradans and tourists choose to attend any of the events throughout the state, patrons are strongly encouraged to be informed about the laws and partake responsibly.

“State agencies, local governments, the marijuana industry and others have worked hard since the passage of Amendment 64 to ensure that Colorado remains a safe, healthy place to live,” said Andrew Freedman, Director of Marijuana Coordination for the State of Colorado. “It’s also important that all Coloradans and visitors to our state know what’s legal and what’s not. We encourage everyone to be safe this weekend and act responsibly.”

The Colorado departments of Transportation (CDOT), Public Health and the Environment (CDPHE), Revenue (DOR), Human Services (DHS), Public Safety (DPS) and the Governor’s office are reminding people that while marijuana may be legal, there are certain restrictions that must be followed for safety reasons.
  • 21+, No Exceptions. You must be age 21 or older to buy, possess or use retail marijuana. And it’s a felony to give or sell recreational marijuana to minors.
  • Drive High, Get a DUI. It is illegal to consume marijuana on public roadways, and any amount of marijuana use can put you at risk for a DUI. There is an open container law for marijuana. It must be sealed and not in the passenger area of a vehicle.
  • Keep it in Colorado. It is illegal to take marijuana across Colorado state lines. And Denver International Airport prohibits possession, use, display and transfer of marijuana on its property.
  • Not in Public, Please. Marijuana cannot be consumed in public. This includes indoor and outdoor restaurants and bars, concert venues, sidewalks, parks, schools, playgrounds and sporting venues.
  • Keep Kids Safe. Avoid use of marijuana, in any form, around children. To avoid accidents, all marijuana-containing products should be clearly labeled, stored in a child-resistant container and locked in a cabinet.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Persistent 'silent' problem

Suicide rate in Colorado remains shockingly high


It is consistently referred to as a "silent" problem in Colorado: A suicide rate that, year after year, remains shockingly high. But the adjective just refers to how we treat suicide.

When someone loses a loved one to, say, cancer or a vehicle accident they might wear a colored ribbon with thousands of other people at a fund-raiser; they might build a roadside memorial. Friends and colleagues might feel unburdened when offering condolences or empathizing. Suicide, an act of violence often preceded by months or years of emotional struggle, is frankly hard for most people to talk about. The unanswered questions it usually leaves behind can stymie conversations between even those quite intimate with it.

That's where the silence ends: Suicide is a well-known, well-documented and widely reported problem in our state. It has been for a long time. Colorado consistently has had one of the highest suicide rates in the nation; it is the leading cause of death for Coloradans aged 10 to 34.

To learn more see the full article.

State Officials Caution the Public About Responsible Marijuana Use During 4/20 Celebrations

April 20 is the unofficial holiday of marijuana enthusiasts. If Coloradans and tourists choose to attend any of the events throughout the state, patrons are strongly encouraged to be informed about the laws and partake responsibly.

“State agencies, local governments, the marijuana industry and others have worked hard since the passage of Amendment 64 to ensure that Colorado remains a safe, healthy place to live,” said Andrew Freedman, Director of Marijuana Coordination for the State of Colorado. “It’s also important that all Coloradans and visitors to our state know what’s legal and what’s not. We encourage everyone to be safe this weekend and act responsibly.”

The Colorado departments of Transportation (CDOT), Public Health and the Environment (CDPHE), Revenue (DOR), Human Services (DHS), Public Safety (DPS) and the Governor’s office are reminding people that while marijuana may be legal, there are certain restrictions that must be followed for safety reasons.


·         21+, No Exceptions. You must be age 21 or older to buy, possess or use retail marijuana. And it’s a felony to give or sell recreational marijuana to minors.
·         Drive High, Get a DUI. It is illegal to consume marijuana on public roadways, and any amount of marijuana use can put you at risk for a DUI. There is an open container law for marijuana. It must be sealed and not in the passenger area of a vehicle.
·         Keep it in Colorado. It is illegal to take marijuana across Colorado state lines. And Denver International Airport prohibits possession, use, display and transfer of marijuana on its property.
·         Not in Public, Please. Marijuana cannot be consumed in public. This includes indoor and outdoor restaurants and bars, concert venues, sidewalks, parks, schools, playgrounds and sporting venues.
·         Keep Kids Safe. Avoid use of marijuana, in any form, around children. To avoid accidents, all marijuana-containing products should be clearly labeled, stored in a child-resistant container and locked in a cabinet.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Did You Know, Colorado? April 16, 2014



  • Secondhand smoke causes numerous health problems: among infants and children this includes more frequent and severe asthma attacks and respiratory and ear infections and increased risk for Sudden Infant Death (SIDS); among adults this includes coronary heart disease, stroke, and lung cancer.
  • The percent of Coloradans who reported smoke-free rules in homes and personal vehicles increased from 2008 to 2012: from 84.5% to 87.1% for homes and from 71.3% to 76.1% for personal vehicles. However, disparities still exist: low SES homes were less likely than other homes to have smoke-free rules (80.7% vs. 93.1%) and three times as likely to report recent smoking in the home (13.8% vs. 4.3%.).1
  • Smoke-free rules in homes and vehicles can reduce secondhand smoke exposure among children and nonsmoking adults. Some studies indicate that these rules can also reduce smoking by reducing the amount of daily smoking among smokers, helping smokers quit, and reducing the number of adolescents who start smoking.

1 Data source: Colorado’s The Attitudes and Behaviors Survey (TABS) on Health
For more information about chronic disease data in Colorado, contact Renee Calanan

Dangers of Mixing Alcohol & Marijuana Highlights Speak Now Efforts





The Colorado Department of Human Services continues to provide new information and materials for communities throughout Colorado through the Speak Now campaign.

Mixing Alcohol and Marijuana
The campaign's latest push is focused on mixed use of alcohol and marijuana. More than 70% of Colorado high schools students reported drinking alcohol at some point in their lives, and more than 40% reported using marijuana making these the two most commonly used substances by teens. Roughly one in eight Colorado high school students reported both binge drinking and using marijuana in the same month.
Through qualitative research conducted in multiple Colorado communities, teens indicated marijuana was almost always present at parties where alcohol was also available. Co-use, or mixing these drugs can lead to dangerous levels of intoxication.
A new page on mixing has been added to the Speak Now website to provide additional facts and information on alcohol and marijuana.

Million Hearts Colorado: Researchers Discover Underlying Genetics, Marker for Stroke, Cardiovascular Disease

NIH-funded findings point to new potential strategies for disease prevention, treatment

Scientists studying the genomes of nearly 5,000 people have pinpointed a genetic variant tied to an increased risk for stroke, and have also uncovered new details about an important metabolic pathway that plays a major role in several common diseases. Together, their findings may provide new clues to underlying genetic and biochemical influences in the development of stroke and cardiovascular disease, and may also help lead to new treatment strategies.

"Our findings have the potential to identify new targets in the prevention and treatment of stroke, cardiovascular disease and many other common diseases," said Stephen R. Williams, Ph.D., a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Virginia Cardiovascular Research Center and the University of Virginia Center for Public Health Genomics, Charlottesville.


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