For some people, April 20 is just another day. But for others, it is an unofficial holiday. “4/20” has been dubbed an unofficial holiday for recreational users of marijuana and marijuana-adjacent products. Though marijuana is still illegal in North Carolina, sister products like delta-8 and CBD are legal and sold in stores. Stores like Sherlocks, a smoke shop across the street from Meredith, sell products that could be bought by students who fall within the legal purchasing age of 21. However, little is known about whether or not students can use these products on campus.
Marijuana and hemp are two species of the plant cannabis. Marijuana contains higher concentrations of THC, whereas hemp contains higher concentrations of CBD. In North Carolina, hemp products are the only ones legally allowed to be possessed or distributed.
Dr. Jean Jackson, Vice President for College Programs, explained that if a substance is legal in North Carolina, it isn’t considered to be illegal on campus. However, she noted that the restrictions on substances also applied on campus. “While delta-8, for example, is considered legal under current federal and state law, it may not legally be purchased or used by anyone under 21 years of age,” she said, meaning that students on campus that do not meet this requirement are prohibited from possessing it on campus.
Additionally, the kinds of products also determine whether or not students can possess them. In North Carolina, hemp CBD products can only contain up to 0.3% THC. Possession or use of products containing more than that amount would break both Meredith rules and state law.
Dr. Jackson also referenced the Hemp Pilot Program bill that the North Carolina General Assembly passed in 2015. The Program is set to expire on June 30, 2022. Dr. Jackson stated that “if the legislature allows that to happen, then pharmaceutical use of hemp in any of its forms will be illegal in North Carolina.” This would also restrict usage on campus.
For now, students who choose to use these products must abide by Meredith’s smoking policies. Dr. Jackson stated that a list of designated outdoor locations where smoking products are allowed can be found on page 71 in the Student Handbook.
By Aminah Jenkins, Associate Editor