Cannabis Prevention in Maine

Since 2017, Maine has seen a rise in cannabis use rates both by our state’s youth and young adults. With the launch of the legal adult use cannabis market in Maine in 2020, cannabis is more easily accessible. The rates of accidental ingestions by young children (ages 0-5) have increased since 2019.  

Not all cannabis products are created equally. Different products have varying concentration of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), and route of administration- whether smoked/vaped, applied topically, dabbed, or consumed- will affect the rate of intoxication. Research has demonstrated that cannabis use before the brain is fully developed in a person’s mid-twenties can increase the likelihood of developing cannabis or other substance use disorders, while also contributing to poor mental health outcomes such as anxiety, depression, psychotic disorders, and suicidal ideation.

Cannabis also is called pot, weed, or marijuana. 

Edibles: Can take up to 4 hours to feel the full effect

Cannabis Prevention Strategies

For Youth and Young Adults

  • Increasing community understanding of the effects and risks of substance use with educational outreach by our coalitions, statewide media campaigns.
  • Reducing youth access to cannabis by:
  • Educating parents on safe storage of cannabis products, as well as the risks of youth use.   
  • Support school policies by:
  • Promoting restorative practices like Student Intervention Reintegration Program (SIRP) for youth ages 13-18  who have violated a substance use policy
  • Offering School Substance Use Policy Guides for educators
  • Collaborating with youth groups like the Maine Youth Action Network (MYAN) who address substance use, mental health, and community action as components of their programming

For Adults

  • Implementing media campaigns like Good To Know to increase awareness of health effects, laws around cannabis use, tips for talking to teens, and important things to know.
  • Promote trainings and toolkits to employers about the influence a workplace culture can have on substance use for adults and minors, like the Healthy US Scorecard and SAMHSA’s Drug-Free Workplace Toolkit.  
  • Offering family education and support services free of stigma for expecting mothers and families about cannabis use and its effects on infants and the home. Maine’s Plan of Safe Care provides support and ongoing safetywell-being and best possible long-term health and developmental outcomes for substance exposed infants, their mothers and other caregivers

Campaigns Addressing Cannabis Use

Times Have Changed  - Addresses how substance use has evolved over time to keep parents current and informed.

Substance Exposed Infants – Educates on the risk of alcohol and other substance use during pregnancy and infant care.

Good To Know – Offers insights and facts about the effects of cannabis use, and how to have effective discussions with youth about making the right choices.

Our Partners In Cannabis Prevention

Adcare Educational Institute of MaineAdcare provides continuing education credits to preventionists on an array of public health topics, from substance misuse, gambling, suicide prevention, and current evidence-based prevention strategies for communities.

New England Prevention Technology Transfer Center (PTTC)- Provides education for prevention workforce on multiple topics related to substance misuse. The PTTC has identified cannabis use prevention as a priority area.

Maine Prevention Services – Headquartered with the University of New England, Maine SUPS is funded by the Maine CDC to lead and coordinate the 19 local agency partners who carry out prevention programming directly in Maine communities.

Our 19 Domain 1 Subrecipient CoalitionsThese are the partners engaging parents, youth, and everyone in our daily lives with the information and inspiration they need to help keep their communities protected and informed.

For More Information

211 Maine – Call, Text, or visit 211 online for the largest database available that connecting people to services and public health information. All outreach is free and confidential. 

Maine SEOW Dashboard – The State Epidemiological Outcomes Workgroup (SEOW) dashboard outlines current data and trends in substance use in the state of Maine. It is a great resource for understanding the risks for your children, your community, and yourself.

MIYHS- The Maine Integrated Youth Health Survey (MIYHS) is a biennial survey conducted by the Maine Department of Health and Human Services and the Maine Department of Education. The survey monitors health behaviors and attitudes regarding tobacco, alcohol, substance use, mental health, nutrition, physical activity, and protective factors.

Cannabis Prevention Toolkit - The Maine CDC Marijuana Workgroup developed a toolkit highlighting current laws, emerging products, local data, health effects, talking points for young people, and the role played by municipalities for cannabis ordinances. The toolkit also contains several infographics.

Marijuana Advisory Commission- Under Maine’s Marijuana Legalization Act (Title 28-B, Chapter 1), the Marijuana Advisory Commission was written into state statute to conduct a continuing study of the laws relating to marijuana and reporting to the Legislature its findings and recommendations on an annual basis.

The Office of Marijuana Policy (OMP) is responsible for the oversight of all aspects of legalized cannabis, including Maine's Medical Use of Marijuana Program.

CADCA- Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America (CADCA) is a support system for substance use prevention coalitions, offering resources, strategies, and success stories to reach every age group and culture.

Maine Prevention Store- This site contains free print materials and digital downloads designed to improve health and help to prevent tobacco use, substance use, and suicide in Maine.

General contact:

  • Tobacco and Substance Use Prevention and Control
  • Phone: (207) 287-4627
  • E-mail:
  • TTY: Maine relay 711