New Jersey recreational marijuana dispensaries open their doors for the first time

New Jersey recreational marijuana dispensaries open their doors for the first time

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From residents…

“My mom is not going to like this message, but yeah, I’m a stoner,” Bloomfield resident Jomey Irizaroy told CBS2.

To businesses…

“There have been people for decades literately consuming this product because they know it’s been good for them. We believe cannabis is about well being,” said Ben Kovler, of Green Thumb Industries.

And advocates…

“What we’re talking about is a step towards repairing the harms of the warn on drugs,” ACLU New Jersey Executive Director Amol Sinha added.

The Garden State is gearing up for the changes.


Anticipation growing for recreational marijuana sales in New Jersey

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Sinha told CBS2 the state needs to make sure the cannabis industry is diverse and puts tax revenue toward community reinvestment.

“So that the communities that have been hardest hit by the war on drugs are able to benefit from legalization,” he said. 

While many see this as a positive step, others can’t help but worry about the negative side effects, including the possible coming wave of new marijuana users: Young kids.

“So our one concern, and we’re imploring everyone, is to make sure you keep it away from your children,” said Sayreville Police Chief John Zebrowski. 

The potential for higher rates of impaired driving is also an issue being talked about. AAA has partnered with Students Against Destructive Driving to educate young people on some of the potential risks

“There’s no difference between the under the influence of marijuana driving and under the influence of drunk driving. We need to understand that both are just as dangerous, regardless of how we may feel about it,” Lauren Zimmerman Meade, of SADD, said.

According to New Jersey’s attorney general, off-duty police officers are allowed to consume cannabis. But the mayors of Jersey City and Bayonne said Wednesday that officers are banned from doing so.



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