Berkeley Dispensaries Will Provide Free Weed to Low-Income Patients
Berkeley Patients Group by John Patriquin
The Berkeley City Council has approved an ordinance that will require Berkeley dispensaries to provide free medical marijuana to low-income and homeless patients. Under the rules of the new measure, dispensaries will be obligated to give away at least two percent of the amount of cannabis they sell annually for no charge.
The Berkeley Patients Group, one of the three medical cannabis dispensaries located in Berkeley, has been giving away free medical pot for the last 15 years under their Helping Hands program.
A spokesperson for BPG, Sean Luse, shared, “We’ve found out over the years that one of the cruel realities is that when you do get sick and you have a serious illness is that it’s often hard to keep a job, can be hard to keep your income up, so those people really need the help the most.”
Potential candidates for free marijuana must meet eligibility requirements in order to qualify. All applicants will need to demonstrate a medical and financial need before they can start receiving their buds. In order to make the cut, single persons cannot make more than $32,000 per year and families of four cannot make more than $46,000 per year.
Provisions have been made to ensure that the marijuana being given away for free is equal quality to the buds being sold to paying customers.
The city council is also considering increasing the number of dispensaries and has begun the process by approving the addition of another dispensary, which will bring Berkeley’s grand total up to four by as early as next year according to the East Bay Express.
Berkeley City Councilmember Darryl Moore told CBS News that, “the city council wants to make sure that low-income, homeless, indigent folks have access to their medical marijuana, their medicine. We think this is the responsible thing to do for those less fortunate in our community.”
The measure won by a unanimous vote and will be officially approved this week.
What do think? Should dispensaries provide free weed to those in need? Tell us in the comments below.