Around New England

Parents Who Come To Pick Up Kids at YMCA Reeking of Marijuana

December 13, 2018

Parents and other adults dropping off and picking up kids at the YMCA of Greater Springfield are arriving smelling like weed, a Y official says.

Recreational marijuana became legal in Massachusetts in December 2016, but the first recreational marijuana shops began opening only recently.

“Staff at the YMCA of Greater Springfield have smelled some of you out and have been instructed to document instances of anyone suspected of being under the influence,” says a notice posted recently at Y locations in the western Massachusetts city. “While marijuana is now legal in Massachusetts, caring for children while under the influence can be considered neglect especially when operating a motor vehicle. What you do on your leisure time is none of our concern. However, when your habit follows you into our facility it raises concerns about you being under the influence.”

The notice threatens notifying police and the state’s child-services agency, and recommends that adults coming to the Y “Smell Check” themselves to make sure they don’t reek of cannabis.

The Y official who wrote the letter, Uriah Rodriguez, apologized this week for some of the wording in the notice but stood behind the idea of contacting the cops if a parent arrives at the Y appearing to be intoxicated, according to MassLive.com.

The president and chief executive of the YMCA of Greater Springfield, Dexter Johnson, told The Boston Globe he was “fuming” when he saw the notice. “It’s really not a good representation of who we are,” Johnson said, according to the Globe.

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