Joints for Jabs Hits Sticking Points, So Far Miserable Start
Yet another sign the Inslee Administration didn't do their homework on their Joints for Jabs free pot cigarette program.
Joints for Jabs gives anyone 21-and-older a free pre-rolled cig if they get a COVID vaccine at a clinic held at a state-licensed pot shop. It's the most controversial 'bribe' yet (as GOP legislators are calling it) to get people to get vaccinated.
We do know Green-2-Go in Finley is reportedly participating in this, having a clinic Saturday June 10th as well as offering discounts to people who show their vaccination card.
However, the following situations have created a bit of a Pandora's Box for many retailers. According to the Associated Press and other sources:
- Despite 11 states allowing recreational pot, it is still illegal at the Federal level. Some retailers are wary of attracting this kind of attention, having a clinic.
- Some stores, especially in urban areas of King County and the Westside, don't have space or room to safely facilitate clinic foot traffic or parking. Efforts to locate clinics offsite have been met with resistance from property-land owners who want no part of 'endorsing' or supporting a marijuana-related promotion.
- Reluctance from some health organizations to participate. Those who receive Federal funding worry that they could lose it if they participate in such marijuana promotions. This has made it difficult for some pot shops to find the necessary organization to administer the vaccines. For this reason, the Spokane Regional Health District, reports the AP, has already said they want no part of this.
State officials mandated the free pot cigs be given out when the person actually receives a vaccine over concerns of vaccine card fraud. They worried a person would show their card at multiple different shops to obtain multiple free cigarettes, which then could be illegally sold or given to under-age persons.
And finally, with the program ending July 12, some retailers and officials say that's not enough time for people to receive their first shot, then come back for the second before this controversial 'perks' program ends.
We will see how effective this actual Joints for Jabs program is at Green 2 Go.