Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker issued a stay-at-home order on Monday as more states ramp up their response to the coronavirus pandemic that continues to sweep the globe. Under the order from the Republican governor, nonessential businesses were directed to close by noon on Tuesday for two weeks and residents were asked to remain at home.
Baker said at a press conference on Monday that his directive would not apply to the state’s medical marijuana dispensaries, which he said would be “treated for all intents and purposes the same way we treat healthcare operations.”
Earlier this month, the Massachusetts Cannabis Control Commission advised dispensaries to “encourage good hygiene, urge employees to stay home when they feel sick, and be flexible and considerate with sick leave benefits, amongst other precautions.”
But Baker’s decision to allow medical marijuana dispensaries to remain open doesn’t apply to adult-use retailers, which are required to comply with the closure order. Dispensaries licensed for both medical and recreational sales were directed to serve only customers with a valid state medical marijuana identification card. Baker said that the distinction was made because recreational cannabis retailers draw a “ton of traffic” including customers from other states. At a time when