ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) – New York State’s first public education initiative focused on informing New Yorkers about the state’s Cannabis Law, “Cannabis Conversations” gained a new round of public service advertisements Wednesday. This new wave of the campaign goes into more depth on the dangers of impaired driving, the risks of youth cannabis use, how to safely store cannabis in your home, and how to respectfully consume cannabis in public.

April 20 is widely recognized across the world as an informal cannabis holiday during which the drug is often openly consumed, historically in protest of criminalization and increasingly in recognition of the successful, long-fought effort to end cannabis prohibition and its disproportionate enforcement. Expanding on these health and safety messages now reminds New Yorkers to be safe on the “holiday”, at a moment when awareness around cannabis is heightened. The “Cannabis Conversations” campaign is running on television, radio, billboards, transit, and social media.

“Today’s new round of public service advertisements as part of the State’s “Cannabis Conversations” campaign is another important step in our journey toward a safe, inclusive, equitable cannabis industry,” Governor Kathy Hochul said. “Part of us building the strongest cannabis industry in the nation is making sure New Yorkers have relevant facts at their fingertips, and we remind all New Yorkers as they join 4/20 celebrations today that it’s never safe to drive high, you shouldn’t consume cannabis in disruptive ways, and cannabis can damage growing brains in youth.”

The first public service advertisement in the “Cannabis Conversations” public health campaign was announced at an event at City College in New York City on Monday, April 4, and introduced New Yorkers to the concepts of who can consume, where to consume, and how to consume safely. The new wave announced Wednesday doubles down on those concepts to provide more information and keep the conversation going. All of the public service announcements point viewers and listeners to New York State’s dedicated cannabis website, where they will find researched, fact-based information to inform the conversations they’re having with friends, family, and kids in their lives.

New York State’s Cannabis Law focuses on public health and is grounded in the principles of public safety, social justice, and equitable economic development designed to help undo the harm caused by cannabis prohibition. As part of this public policy shift, the law requires public health education campaigns that inform New Yorkers of the new law and the impact of cannabis use on public health and safety.