The Mayor of Washington D.C. granted medical dispensaries permission to begin offering curbside pickup and home delivery services to their patients as of last week. In what is referred to as an "emergency rule" Mayor Muriel Bowser along with the DC Health Department announced that medical marijuana dispensaries would be able to remain open as long as they implemented home delivery and curbside pickup services.
According to the new rule, all changes made would take effect immediately and would last for 120 days or after the 45 days health emergency period elapsed, whichever comes first.
A couple of weeks earlier, Mayor Muriel Bowser in a statement classified cannabis dispensaries in the city as essential businesses, thus, granting them permission to open and carry out sales.
The Mayor encouraged these cannabis stores to strictly adhere to the Federal Government's social distancing recommendations in their stores. With that in mind, most of the medical cannabis stores in the city only allow a certain number of people into the store at once.
To encourage and make the task of adhering to social distancing recommendations easier for these cannabis stores, the Mayor announced that they can begin offering curbside and home delivery services to patients in need of these products.
According to the emergency rule, this decision was made to ensure that city residents do not have any reason to leave their homes during this time. Additionally, it is the city's way of curbing the spread of the COVID-19 virus.
With this emergency rule, Washington DC joins a number of states that have allowed medical dispensaries to offer home delivery and curbside pick up services during this pandemic.
Medical marijuana dispensaries are required to register all delivery vehicles with the department, and all authorized drivers must also be registered. Delivery vehicles are not allowed to display advertising on the exterior of the car to indicate that it is being used to deliver cannabis.
Additionally, all delivery vehicles must have a GPS tracker to “ensure that the most direct delivery route is followed.” Medical marijuana dispensaries must use software that can verify the patient status prior to delivering medical marijuana products and store that information in the patient profile.
Delivery hours of operation are limited to 11 AM to 7 PM. No single driver can make more than 10 deliveries in a single run, and delivery vehicles are not allowed to carry more than $5,000 in cash or value of the products.