We are in the midst of battling a global pandemic and confirmed cases of COVID-19 are multiplying across the U.S.—it's unlike anything that we've seen in generations. We want you and your colleagues to be as safe and secure as possible. We'd like to share the following recommendations for businesses providing much-needed services for medical cannabis patients and adult-use consumers during this crisis.
Stay up-to-date with emergency regulations
We’ve seen industries across the globe ceasing or severely restricting business activity and the cannabis industry is no exception. In order to deal with the present situation, we would advise cannabis dispensaries to stay on top of emergency regulations issued by national, state and local government agencies. States have already acted by implementing cannabis-specific emergency regulations that make it easier to operate in this new environment—for example, Maryland, Illinois and Michigan have already allowed curbside pickup and delivery, and we are hopeful other states and localities will follow their lead and fast-track similar measures. Many municipalities have designated cannabis dispensaries as “essential businesses” so that citizens have access to safely cultivated cannabis. Staying up to date on evolving regulations is crucial for your dispensary to maintain safe operations in this challenging time.
Restrict the number of persons in your dispensary
Dispensaries have the responsibility to limit the numbers of customers inside the facility at any given point to maintain six-foot social distancing. This goes in line with the need for keeping staff, at-risk patients and other customers healthy and safe. This can be accomplished by:
- Ensuring six-foot distancing within the waiting room and sales areas
- Using marked guides on the floor to channel traffic.
- Encouraging online/phone orders for pickup only
- Changing check-in procedures so customers can wait in their vehicles
- Calling/texting customers to enter facility
If lines are unavoidable, staff members should enforce the six-foot distance rule between customers.
Refine sanitary practices and enforce diligence for the safety of all
We know you’ve heard this maybe a million times at this point, however, it still is the best advice we can give you to keep your business afloat. Employees should wear gloves at all times and high-touch surfaces should be disinfected after every transaction. The facility, especially public areas, should be cleaned every other hour. Implement required temperature check for staff upon arrival, and staff should wash hands every thirty minutes. Hand sanitizer and disinfecting wipes should be readily available for employees and customers alike. Any staff member showing symptoms should be sent home immediately.
Remember the power of community
Keep in mind that you are part of a larger community and there is power in having a unified message—not only to your staff, but to your customers and neighbors. Cannabis is medicine, and as such, regulations must be put in place in order to keep everyone healthy, especially the most vulnerable populations. Brian Vicente, partner and founding member of law firm Vicente Sederberg, based in Colorado, said during an interview with Cannabis Dispensary Magazine: “We just need to be persistent and concise in our messaging, and really come together as a movement. We've seen in Colorado and some other places, California, sign-on letters, groups that maybe don't agree on everything. Business owners who compete against each other are coming together.” Trust in your community and take it day by day.
These are hard times for sure, but Yobi believes in the power of cannabis, community, and information. Stay tuned in regarding your state’s emergency regulations and always follow CDC recommendations. For more information regarding COVID-19, click here.