States Are Deeming Cannabis “Essential” during Outbreak

States Are Deeming Cannabis  “Essential” during Outbreak

Posted by Toker Grace on Mar 25, 2020 12:35:07 PM

By now, you have heard of a multitude of states enacting emergency protocols calling for the shutdown of a slew of businesses and industries. Some of these include restaurants, arts & craft stores, clothing retailers, and even some small-sized medical practices (i.e., dentists, chiropractors). One industry a handful of states are avoiding a mandated curfew or closure is the cannabis industry. Most states with legalization statutes have deemed dispensaries and cannabis delivery services ‘essential business.’ But what makes cannabis so essential during the COVID-19 pandemic?

Cannabis is Still Medicine

One primary reason that dispensaries and cannabis delivery services remain open amidst the COVID-19 pandemic is that they provide a variety of medicine to a variety of patients. Sure, the recreational consumer choosing to stockpile cannabis similar to toilet paper, soaps, and food is one idea. Countless patients need cannabis and have been confined to their dwelling while adhering to the mandated curfews and ‘necessary travel’ outlined by their governments. By this logic, how else would patients receive their medication? Most states recognized (to some capacity) that cannabis has beneficial factors for patients. Some of these include:

  • Anticonvulsant – helps prevent seizures
  • Antidepressant – helps combat depression, uplift mood
  • Antioxidant – helps boost the immune system
  • Antipsychotic – helps combat Psychosis
  • Anti-inflammatory – helps reduce inflammation
  • Antitumoral – helps combat carcinogens
  • Neuroprotecant – helps combat Dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease

Similar to pharmacies, patients need access to their medications. States have agreed and decided to make sure qualifying patients can receive their cannabis outside of curfew hours or via a cannabis delivery service. 

Not All Cannabis Businesses are Listed as Essential

Although some dispensaries and a few cannabis dispensaries, such as Ganja Goddess, can remain open for operation, other cannabis-based businesses are not. These decisions can be government mandated or may have been handed down by corporate. Dispensaries are places not suited for social distancing. Cannabis dispensaries operate by enticing the consumer to utilize all 5 of their senses before making a purchase. Consumers touch buds, smell plants, inspect paraphernalia, and more. For these reasons, the risk of spreading germs even of the COVID-19 variety is highly likely. This is why some cannabis businesses have decided to remain closed during the ‘Stay Home Initiative.’ 

Why the COVID-19 Pandemic Will Cause an Economic Disaster

Some companies’ initial decision to remain open during these scary times is tied directly to revenues being lost. Companies such as these, as well as small businesses, may not have the financial fortitude to recover from not being deemed an essential business by their governing bodies. For perspective, some of the businesses that have been forced to closed are:

  • Restaurants & Food Service establishments
  • Clothing Retailers (i.e., J.C. Penny’s, Macy’s)
  • Footwear Retailers (i.e., Foot Locker, Finish Line)
  • Theme Parks (i.e.Disney, Universal Studios)
  • Technology Retailers (i.e., Apple, Best Buy)
  • And many others.

Additionally, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, a slew of professional sporting events have been canceled, with some lasting until June. As of March 19, four players for the Brooklyn Nets, including the legendary Kevin Durant, have tested positive for Coronavirus. Cases such as these have led the NBA to halt its season indefinitely. The inaugural season of the XFL, an alternative spring football variation to the NFL led by Vince McMahan, has been canceled. Moreover, the Indy 500 scheduled for May has been canceled. All of these cancellations can lead to losing ticket sales, TV contracts, and brand reputation. Good thing that the government realizes the medical potential of cannabis amidst these times.

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