So far this series has covered marijuana at home, in public, in the car, but what about at your local daycare?
Disclaimer: This is not legal advice. I am not a lawyer. This piece is purely for informational purposes regarding Act 86, a Vermont bill that pertains only to Vermont and has no bearing on federal law.
Spoiler alert: Marijuana and tobacco are severely restricted at child care facilities and in some cases can lead to steep penalties.
Sec. 16. 33 V.S.A. § 3504 is amended to read:
- MARIJUANA AND TOBACCO USE PROHIBITED AT CHILD CARE FACILITIES
- No person shall be permitted to use marijuana as defined in 18 V.S.A. 4201 or to cultivate marijuana, or use tobacco products or tobacco substitutes as defined in 7 V.S.A. 1001 on the premises, both indoor and outdoor, of any licensed child care center or afterschool program at any time.
Vermont’s definition of marijuana can be found in our previous blog here and a list of tobacco products and tobacco substitutes can be found here and here.
At no time are either to be consumed nor cultivated at licensed child care centers or on their grounds.
Another type of child care program, known as family child care homes, operate a little differently. As opposed to licensed centers and after school programs, family child care homes have stricter limits on the number of children they can host at any time. The designation of “family” and “home” are a bit misleading though as both can reside within a private residence, although licensed centers are subject to different regulations. (More information on the definitions can be gotten here.)
3504. MARIJUANA AND TOBACCO USE PROHIBITED AT CHILD CARE FACILITIES
(b) No person shall be permitted to use marijuana as defined in 18 V.S.A. 4201, tobacco products, or substitutes as defined in 7 V.S.A. 1001 on the premises, both indoors and in any outdoor area designated for child care, or a licensed and registered family child care home while children are present and in care. If use of marijuana or smoking of tobacco products or tobacco substitutes occurs on the premises during other times, the family child care home shall notify prospective families prior to enrolling a child in the family child care home that their child will be exposed to an environment in which marijuana, tobacco products, or tobacco substitutes are used. Cultivation of marijuana in a licensed or registered family child care home is not permitted.
Use of marijuana and tobacco at family child care homes is prohibited when children are present and in care. If either is consumed during the off hours at a family child care home, that facility still has to tell parents and guardians.
As we come to fully understand third-hand smoke, a carcinogenic residue left behind on surfaces after smoking either marijuana or tobacco, it’s the duty of child care workers to tell parents that their child may be exposed to said chemicals in that facility.
Cultivation in both licensed centers and family homes is a big no-no. Knowingly growing marijuana in either is a misdemeanor crime and can lead to:
- A $500 fine for the first offense
- A $750 fine for the second offense
- A $1,000 fine for a third and subsequent offense.
Like other sections of this law, these penalties are in place to protect children and minimize their exposure to marijuana when this law comes into effect July 1, 2018. Better to be safe than sorry.