Parents Who Support Easing Marijuana Laws Want it Illegal for Those Under 21

A new survey finds many parents favor either legalizing marijuana for recreational use, or decriminalizing the drug, while 70 percent support legalizing medical marijuana. Most parents say the legal age for marijuana use should be 21, USA Today reports.

The survey, released by the Partnership for Drug-Free Kids, found 35 percent of parents say they are in favor of legalizing marijuana for recreational purposes, while 46 percent say it should be decriminalized. The online survey included 1,603 adults, of whom 1,200 are parents of children ages 10 to 19.

About 90 percent of mothers and 94 percent of fathers say they think the legal age for marijuana use should be 21. The survey also found 95 percent of mothers and 96 percent of fathers believe marijuana should be prohibited in public places where smoking is banned, and 88 percent of mothers and 90 percent of fathers want marijuana advertising to be banned.

“The reality is that marijuana is now legalized for recreational use in the states of Colorado and Washington and it’s clear that society’s views on marijuana are evolving dramatically,” Steve Pasierb, President and CEO of the Partnership for Drug-Free Kids, said in a news release. “This new research provides richer insight into what today’s parents believe about marijuana, their thoughts on legalization and the risks it may pose to adolescents. The data bring to life the fact that parents – including the large number who favor legalization – have serious expectations that legal marijuana will be regulated and restricted to protect kids and teens. Those expectations far exceed how legal marijuana is being implemented. So the fact remains, whether marijuana is legal or not, much more needs to be done to protect the health of our children.”