Cannabis during crisis: COVID-19 Safety Protocols
The provision of cannabis has been deemed an essential service in the state of Oregon.
We’re taking that designation to heart.
It is an honor and a privilege to be able to serve our community at a time we’re needed the most, and we are incredibly fortunate to remain open while so many of our fellow businesses have been forced to close their doors.
The designation of cannabis as “essential” in some states certainly signals an evolution for our industry. But let’s not celebrate too early– there is much more work that still needs to be done.
We’re thinking of people of color who have been unfairly persecuted by the War on Drugs, who are now once again caught in social crossfire; the heritage growers who kept the spirit of cannabis alive who are being priced out of the game; and the patients that propelled the movement forward who now face unprecedented uncertainty about their health, their livelihood and the broken healthcare system that was supposed to take care of them.
And so here we are.
We will be open with adjusted hours: 11am-5pm every day of the week for as long as we’re allowed. But it won’t be business as usual.
Cannabis may be discretionary spending for some, but we cannot understate the fact that a great many people depend on cannabis as their primary form of medicine– and that includes those who don’t have official diagnoses or OMMP cards. Each day, we supply cannabis for folks with serious medical conditions, compromised immune systems, senior citizens, and other vulnerable groups.
It’s because of these groups that Farma exists in the first place, and it’s because of them that we’re implementing such strict safety measures during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Flattening the curve requires the participation of people on both sides of the counter. Read on to see what we’re doing at Farma, and what you can do to help us save lives.
Here’s what we’re doing
1. We’ve implemented strict sanitation protocols to keep our store as safe as possible for our staff and our customers.
We are taking extra care to deep clean the shop when we close each night and at frequent intervals throughout the day. Additionally, everyone on staff is washing and sanitizing their hands between customer interactions.
2. We’ve eliminated all common touch points from the showroom floor.
No more coffee table, no more chairs, no more waiting room books or magazines. The only touchable things left in the shop are the door handle, the buttons on the ATM, and the counters, which we are regularly sanitizing with isopropyl alcohol.
3. We have placed markings on the floor of the showroom to indicate 6-foot spacing.
4. We’ve reduced our staff to an essential skeleton essential crew to limit the number of people in the building.
The more we can do with less people, the better.
5. We won’t touch your ID at any point during the transaction (just flash it at us!), and we’ll be extra safe in the handling of your change.
We will place your change on the counter to prevent hand-to-hand contact.
6. We’ve made rules (below) for our customers to follow, too.
Here’s what you can do
We’re asking that all of our customers kindly follow the guidelines below to ensure the safety of all in the shop, especially patients and other at-risk members of our community.
If you do not follow these rules, you will be asked to leave. We are making every possible effort to keep you, our staff, and our community safe by minimizing the transmission of Coronavirus.
1. If you are showing symptoms of COVID-19, please stay home and have a caregiver or person over the age of 21 to do your shopping for you.
Our staff and our customers’ health is our top priority. If you are showing symptoms, you will be kindly asked to leave.
2. No more than two people in the showroom at a time, or one person per budtender.
In order to maintain safe social distancing measures, please keep at least 6 feet away from your budtender and other patrons in the shop. If you’re shopping with a group (of which all members are over the age of 21), please designate one person to come in and do the shopping.
3. No more than two people in the waiting room at a time.
Again, please maintain at least 6 feet of distance between yourself and the other person in the room, including your budtender.
4. If a line forms, we kindly ask that you wait outside to get your ID checked and maintain at least 6 feet of space with other patrons.
And please note that medical patients, those over the age of 60, and immunocompromised people will be prioritized in line.
5. No dogs allowed.
We love our furry friends as much as anyone, but their kisses could endanger someone’s life right now. Please leave them at home, and give them a treat for us.
6. In order to limit exposure, we aim to keep interactions brief— no more than 5 minutes per customer.
If you have questions that you think may take more than 5 minutes, give us a call and chat with one of our knowledgeable budtenders for as long as you need to. We’d normally love to spend quality time IRL with you in the shop, but right now it’s more important to limit our physical interactions for the safety of both you and our staff.
7. No jar smelling and no handling of product.
But we’re more than happy to use our experiences and our words to reconstruct the sensory experience for you.
Thank you for your patience with us as we navigate these uncharted waters.
Farma is a safe space. Help us keep it that way.
Your friendly neighborhood weed store.