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The Rumor Mill: McDonald’s Going from Ball Pits to Bong Pods?

If you’ve been paying attention to the rumor mill lately, you may have heard that McDonald’s is on the verge of cashing in on Colorado’s legalized recreational use of marijuana.

So, has weed replaced fries in the supersized combo? Perhaps it’s a new Happy Meal toy? Say it ain’t so, McDonald’s!

Legalized Weed is Driving Wild Rumors

Postings across multiple online outlets claimed that several McDonald’s locations in Colorado had removed their Playplaces and installed marijuana-friendly smoking stations. These “smoke pods” would allegedly allow for joint, bong or pipe usage, complete with ventilation that keeps aromas from bothering other patrons.

Sound a little far-fetched? It should; Colorado might have legalized the personal recreational use of marijuana, but it’s still illegal to smoke it in public. As it turns out, the McDonald’s stories are either wishful thinking or crazy marketing ploys. That means customers at the Colorado locations won’t be subjected to any personal pot pods any time soon.

Using Drugs in Public?

No smoking area boardCurrently, it is against the law for anyone to abuse drugs in a public space anywhere in the United States.

Of course, that doesn’t mean everyone abides by the rules.

Across the nation, public restrooms, parking garages, alleyways and other out-of-the-way public spaces double as drug use areas. This usually results in a wealth of dangerous drug paraphernalia being left behind as “trash,” ultimately placing innocent patrons at-risk.

Nobody wants their children stepping on dirty heroin needles on their way to a water fountain in the park, but things like that certainly can – and do – happen.

Coming Soon – Injection Rooms?

Thanks to the bevy of dangers posed by dirty drug paraphernalia in public spaces, some people are pushing for Supervised Injection Facilities (SIF). These facilities offer a safe and clean place for people to inject illicit drugs with no legal penalty. Pre-obtained drugs are injected under medical supervision, with the goal of reducing health and community problems associated with injection drug use (unlike the McDonald’s scenario, where the goal would simply be increased food sales.)

SIF staff members are present 24/7 to assist with medical help (when needed), teach safer injection methods, and offer recovery resources if users express interest in getting clean.

Currently there are a handful of SIFs in operation around the world. Studies have shown the facilities help to reduce injection-related risks and transmission of diseases; however, things aren’t as rosy as they might seem. InSite, an injection facility operating out of Vancouver, Canada, experienced a record-breaking number of overdose fatalities earlier this year, thanks to an enormous influx of heroin that had been cut with fentanyl.

Additional Reading: First Legal Drug Consumption Room to Open in Paris